Mediterranean Sea: Refugees

Home Office written question – answered on 23rd June 2015.

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Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent representations she has received from European officials concerning the migrant situation in the Mediterranean.

Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what further resources the Government plans to offer to the international effort to save the lives of migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean.

Photo of James Brokenshire James Brokenshire Minister of State (Home Office) (Security and Immigration)

Holding answer received on 18 June 2015

The UK has regular discussions with European officials about the migrant situation in the Mediterranean. The Government remains committed to working with other Member States to find a sustainable solution.

It is vital that the EU breaks the link between getting on a boat and achieving residence in Europe, and breaks the business model of the people smugglers and traffickers. We are playing a leading role in joint efforts to achieve this but comprehensive, long-term action in countries of origin and transit is also required to tackle the causes of illegal immigration. We are determined to focus joint EU and international efforts on building stability in these countries, and increase support and protection for those who need it in North and East Africa.

The Government has already pledged substantial resource to the effort to save lives in the Mediterranean, including HMS Bulwark, two Border Force cutters and three Merlin Helicopters. We are keeping this under close review.

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