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  1. ITV Report

Row over child migrants' ages is a 'distraction'

Migrants in France as authorities prepare to clear the 'jungle' camp Credit: Reuters

The Labour peer who led efforts to bring unaccompanied child migrants from the 'jungle' camp in Calais to the UK has said the row over their ages is a "distraction".

Alf Dubs, a former child refugee from the Nazis, told ITV News the arrival of dozens of children without previous links to the UK is a "good thing" and is supported by most of the British public.

He added he regretted it had been overshadowed by suggestions some of were adults who had managed to trick officials into believing they were children.

The row saw calls for migrants' teeth to be examined to establish their age - something that was condemned as unethical and inappropriate by dentists.

Lord Dubs said: "I don't think we should be distracted from what is a good news story by some comments about the age of some of the children.

"It's hard to tell the age of somebody. Maybe the experiences they went thought have aged them quite a bit.

"And if the odd one slips through who is 18, the world does not come to an end."

The Labour lord, who was saved from the Nazis by the Kindertransport, had sponsored the Dubs amendment which committed the UK to offering sanctuary to lone child migrants and refugees in France, Italy and Greece.

Previously, the government had only allowed in those who had family members resident in the UK.