'It's inhumane' - Iranian asylum seeker hits out at new law to stop migrant Channel crossings

  • WATCH ITV News Meridian's Joe Coshan reporting on the new legislation.

Hundreds of extra officers patrolling the beaches, a new detention centre and more surveillance drones are all the ways the Prime Minister hopes will stop small boats crossing the Channel.

They were announced by Rishi Sunak alongside President Emmanuel Macron in the first formal UK-France summit for five years.

There were hopes of an agreement to be able to return migrants across the Channel but that didn't come into fruition and lawyers say the illegal migration bill may not become law.

The UK will pay France nearly half a billion pounds to step up efforts to stop small boats.

Ali arrived on the Kent coast in a small boat in 2021. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Ali was forced to flee his homeland in Iran as his life was in danger at the hands of the Iranian government and is still waiting for a decision on his asylum application.

He says the government's plans to deport migrants who cross the channel illegally, like himself, when they're genuinely seeking asylum, is inhumane.

"When we wanted to take the boat and cross the Channel, we were full of hope and fears. We saw danger in our home country and we just needed to try our chance in order to find a safe life for ourselves. Crossing the Channel is dangerous and there's no legal way. When anyone's life is in danger they shouldn't put a cap. That's ridiculous and hilarious. They just want to close the border because they don't care at all about human rights."

However, the PM is confident the legislation complies with their treaty obligations and he says he's convinced the new measures will break the business model of the criminal gangs and stop the boats reaching the South East.