Deaths in the channel


Sir, – Caroline Connolly is quite right to describe the men, women and children who perished in the English Channel as victims (Letters, November 26th).

However, until those people entering the UK can be formally termed refugees, their asylum applications must be processed under the UN Convention as explained in your November 25th editorial.

Until that happens, they remain as asylum seekers or migrants. In the context of the current tragic situation in the English Channel, it is worth pointing out that the European Commission only recently launched a renewed action plan against migrant smuggling (2021-2025) which provides for intensive operational and law enforcement co-operation between member states and partner countries such as the UK, with the aim of eliminating the criminal networks engaged in the vile crime of people smuggling.

One can only hope that, despite the inept and disrespectful approach to the French president taken by Boris Johnson, the relevant agencies in the UK will take the opportunity to seriously engage with their European neighbours in this endeavour. – Yours etc,


Terenure, Dublin 12.