Commenting on the Government’s immigration statistics for the first quarter of 2024, Denisa Delić, Advocacy Director at the International Rescue Committee UK, says:

“The statistics released today show that the number of people risking their lives to cross the Channel in the first few months of 2024 was 43% higher than in the same period last year. This demonstrates that deterrence policies don’t work and until the government scales up safe routes, people fleeing conflict in places like Afghanistan will be driven to make dangerous journeys in search of safety. 

“With the tragic loss of nine lives in this period, it’s a reminder that unacceptable deaths will continue until safe routes are made available for those who need them.

“The government must scale up safe routes to ensure fewer people are forced to take dangerous journeys in the first place – resettlement schemes, a refugee visa and family reunion schemes are more effective and humane alternatives that would offer orderly routes to protection for refugees.”