Hello and Bonjour. Do you know much about the Treaty of Le Touquet? Non? Well, today you are going to learn. Oui. You are welcome. In February 2003, France and the UK came up with the ‘Treay of Le Touquet’-it was formerly known as the Treaty between the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of the French Republic concerning the implementation of frontier controls at sea ports of both countries on the Channel and the North Sea. It does not take a PhD to figure out why they went with the abridged version. For real.
The agreement provided for juxtaposed controls on a number of cross-Channel ferry routes. The Treaty was put into effect in the UK by the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 (Juxtaposed Controls) Order 2003. France has established immigration checkpoints at Port of Dover-where the French Border Police carry out immigration entry checks into the Schengen Area on passengers travelling to Calais or Dunkirk. My American brothers and sisters, please refer to your maps. Yes, I said it.
Presently, the UK has immigration checkpoints at the ports of Calais and Dunkirk. At Calais and Dunkirk, passengers go through French exit checks as well as UK immigration entry checks before embarkation.
According to the BBC, Xavier Bertrand recently said that people living in the camp known as the ‘Jungle’ should be able to apply at a ‘hotspot’ in France rather than waiting to reach Britain. UK officials currently check passports in France, which stops MANY from entering. The Home Office chimed in and said, “those in need of protection should seek asylum in the first safe country they enter. ” Further, Mr Betrand indcated that under his plan-anyone rejected by the UK would then be deported directly to their country of origin. They are not to collect 200USD. And they should probably sell Baltic Avenue…of course if you are playing UK Monopoly, Baltic Avenue is renamed Whitchapel Road. But I digress.
The Jungle camp has now become a focial point of France’s refugee crisis-there are nearly 9K people living there, according to the BBC. Nearly every night, many desperate people will try to circumvent passport checks by hiding inside vehicles that entering the port and the Channel Tunnel to get to Britain. Oh my word. Those poor people. Not only do they have to live in sub standard conditions in the Jungle but they have to hide in vehicles to reach the UK. Horrible.
Bertrand hopes that in amending the bilateral agreement between France and the UK (Treaty of Le Touquet) it would help alleviate the current problems/issues. As earlier stated, the treaty allows British immigrant officials to check passports in Calais-while their French counterparts to the same in Dover-and without it, the UK officials would have to wait until people and vehicles actually arrived on British soil.
The government indicated that it was committed to working together to protect the shared boreder in Calais and insisted there was “an excellent relationship with the French government on these issues.” Well, that is good. In fact, it is mighty fine.
One last thing, it is terribly sad that 9K migrants are currently living in the Jungle camp in Calais (pictured above), and their living conditions are pretty deplorable. Yes, yes it is. And further, approximately 4K lone children are claiming asylum in the UK-with their care and resettlement options/challenges now down to local authorities. Yikes.
Also, how does BREXIT affect the Treaty-what will happen to the Treaty of Le Touquet when Article 50 is triggered? I have no idea. And guess what-neither does the government. That is all.