Suspected Migrants Rescued Near Dover

19 February 2019, 11:12 | Updated: 19 February 2019, 11:13

border force

Three men have been arrested on suspicion of immigration offences after a group of 34 suspected migrants were rescued from a small boat off the coast of Dover.

Two Border Force cutters and a coastal patrol vessel intercepted the men, women and children at around 6.30am on Monday.

The Home Office said the suspected migrants, whose nationalities have yet to be confirmed, have been taken to Dover for immigration officials to interview them.

Kent Police said its officers attended the Port of Dover at around 11am on Monday to assist Border Force with the incident.

A Home Office spokeswoman said: "Today Border Force responded to an incident in the Channel involving a small boat containing 34 people. The group were brought to Dover and have been transferred to immigration officials for interview.

"Since the Home Secretary declared a major incident in December we have tripled the number of cutters operating in the Channel, agreed a joint action plan with France and increased activity out of the Joint Coordination and Information Centre in Calais.

"The number of individuals attempting to cross the Channel decreased from around 250 in December to around 90 in January, with roughly half of the January attempts being intercepted by partners in France before they could make it to British waters."