Morgues in North Africa full with migrants who died trying to reach Europe, Immigration Minister warns

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 16: Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick leaves the 10 Downing Street after attending the Weekly Cabinet Meeting in London, United Kingdom on May 16, 2023. (Photo by Rasid Necati Aslim/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

MORGUES in North Africa are overflowing with the bodies of dead migrants trying to get to Europe, the Immigration Minister has warned

Robert Jenrick said parts of the Mediterranean risk “becoming a graveyard” – in a wake-up call to critics of his bid to stop the boats.

Robert Jenrick visited North Africa to go “upstream” of the migrant crisis

Following his five-day tour of the region he vowed to get flights to Rwanda off the country “as quickly as we possibly can” and eyes more return deals with other countries.

Speaking exclusively to HOAR upon his return, Mr Jenrick said: “The level of exploitation and abuse of human beings that is involved in this trade is grotesque in a way that I think people don’t even fully appreciate.

“There are parts of the Mediterranean at risk of becoming a graveyard. There are some North African countries whose mortuaries are full as a result of bodies being pulled out of the water by their coastguard services or washed up on their beaches.”

British officers are being deployed in the region to work with local enforcement as the migration crisis explodes. 

Almost four times as many people crossed from Tunisia into Italy in the first three months of this year than the same period last year.

Mr Jenrick said the vast majority were not genuine asylum seekers but “young males, who are fit and able” trying to get to Britain. 

Claiming to be the first UK Minister to have ever visited “upstream” of the migration route, he said he was “taking the fight” to evil trafficking gangs. 

The Cabinet Minister said: “I’ve had a sense that for too long, we’ve been defensive, and we need to go on the attack and target the people smugglers upstream.”

After visiting Tunisia, Algeria and our officials in Libya, he hit out at critics playing down the UK’s role in the fight against illegal migration.

He said: “There is an opportunity for the UK to lead in this field and an appetite for people to work with us. And there has been a commentary in recent months by some that the UK is an outlier.

“That could not be further from the truth. That is wrong. Those people need to get their head out of the sand.”

Rishi Sunak is praying the flagship Rwanda plan currently will survive a court battle set to deliver its judgement shortly.

Asked if flights will take off within weeks of a government victory, Mr Jenrick said: “We’ll get fights off to Rwanda as quickly as we possibly can.

“I’m confident that we’re going to get the flights to Rwanda. And nobody should be in any doubt of the determination of the Prime Minister, the Home Secretary or me to make this happen.”

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