Calais migrants issue needs tackling as "matter of urgency"
Migration – Ministerial meeting of the group of “like-minded” states – Press briefing given by M. Jean-Marc Ayrault, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development
London, 16 October 2016
THE MINISTER – My friend and government colleague Bernard Cazeneuve and I talked about the unaccompanied minors who are in Calais. At the last Franco-British summit the British government made commitments to take in minors, particularly those with family in Britain. Further meetings have since taken place between the French and British governments, commitments in principle have been made by the British government – which, incidentally, has itself taken the issue of minors into account in its legislation.
So I repeated to Boris Johnson that this extremely sensitive, extremely important issue needs to be tackled as a matter of urgency. I had the opportunity to repeat this to him firmly, because the commitments, of course, must be put into practice, and at a time when the government is embarking on dismantling what’s called the Calais “jungle”, it’s very important that this issue of minors is tackled with the utmost solidarity and humanity. I repeated this to Boris Johnson.
Q. – Why has this taken so long?
THE MINISTER – That’s a question for the British government, but I very much hope it will happen quickly; things are starting to move, but they must be speeded up./.