Up to 50,000 people are expected to make the perilous crossing by the end of the year. That means up to 250,000 could arrive by 2027.
Liz Truss, who is set to succeed Boris Johnson as prime minister, has pledged to “stop human traffickers once and for all”.
But global issues, such as the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, droughts, food shortages and terrorist threats in Africa, will push more towards Europe and the UK.
The National Maritime Security Strategy, released this week, said global instability would mean “the movement of people across borders…is likely to become a greater challenge.”
The report states: “Those seeking a better life for their families or fleeing oppression use established land and sea routes to enter Europe. Some will attempt secondary migration journeys to reach the UK and we can expect this to continue over the next five years and beyond.
The report, which received input from Foreign Secretary Ms Truss, Home Secretary Priti Patel, Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and Environment Secretary Grant Shapps, says organized crime gangs have “increasingly taken advantage of the most desperate in society”.
Ms Truss said: ‘I will ensure we have the right levels of force and protection on our borders.
It plans to strengthen the policy of sending people to Rwanda for treatment to discourage those who do not have a legitimate asylum claim.
She said: “We need to break the cycle of terrible gangs and stop people taking dangerous trips across the Channel.
“I am determined to see the Rwandan policy through to full implementation as well as exploring other countries where we can work on similar partnerships.”
Alp Mehmet, president of Migration Watch, said: “The government clearly has no idea how many people are coming or what to do about this crisis.
“What’s obvious is that at the current rate we’re on track for around 50,000 people to arrive illegally this year and they’re not close to overpowering. How sad and disturbing.
“Currently we are on track for just over 50,000 to come this year. That’s a quarter of a million over five years if things continue as they are.
Refugee charities yesterday called on the UK and French governments, as well as the EU, to have ‘adult’ conversations about sharing responsibility for people traveling to Europe.
Enver Solomon, chief executive of the Refugee Council, told the Daily Express: “According to the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, 100 million people worldwide have been forced to flee their homes due to war in Ukraine and other emergencies, from Africa to Afghanistan.
“These are men, women and children who have been uprooted from their homes, their lives turned upside down by war and persecution.
“No one risks their life or that of their family, unless fleeing dangers more acute than those they face on these dangerous journeys.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel has been forced to defend the policy of sending people to Rwanda, insisting it is a ‘safe’ country, despite warnings from ministry officials of Foreign Affairs regarding torture and murder.
The British High Commissioner to Rwanda in 2021 warned that the country “has been accused of recruiting refugees to carry out armed operations in neighboring countries”.
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