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Calais-migrants-fence-main_article_image.jpg
PA Wire
World News

Church urged to collaborate to protect the dignity of migrants by Christian charity

It comes after a growing number of people have risked their lives to travel from Dover to Calais in recent months.

On Thursday last week, UK and French authorities had nearly 100 migrants, including 17 children, trying to cross the Channel in one day while a further 35 migrants were intercepted on both sides of the water the following day.

Two more boats were intercepted carrying 28 people on Monday, followed by another three dinghies on Tuesday morning.

Christian charity Seeking Sanctuary is calling on the Christian community to push both the English and French government for more humane conditions for migrants.

Spokesperson Ben Bano told Premier that migrants are motivated to take the dangerous journey: "What we're seeing in Calais is people pitching tents, if they have them, in areas of waste land, being cleared away more or less every other night, if not every night.

"People are thinking 'I've got nothing else to lose, this couldn't be worse."

Bano says there is no easy fix to deal with the influx of people fleeing war and conflict but there are measures that need to be taken to ensure migrants are treated with dignity and respect.

He said: "One thing we can do is to just improve the conditions a little bit so that people don't feel they have to make these desperate attempts.

"We also call on the French authorities to stop the constant harassment of people so that at least they can be in conditions of some dignity.

"Equally, we call on the British authorities to collaborate with the French government to make sure that this harassment stops."

Bano encouraged Christians to join together to bring about change and told Premier how the Church can help: "There is prayer and there is action. One of the things that we can do is to collaborate with other Christian groups, so that we can really focus attention on the way in which our churches and our faith communities can continue to press for humane and decent treatment for our fellow brothers and sisters in humanity."

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