I can’t understand why France doesn’t just arrest them and put them in a jail until they can be deported, is just due to the sheer numbers/cost? They are in France illegally, if they needed refuge then I’m sure France would be happy to process them and put them in a suitable french refugee camp. But if they refuse then they aren’t anything but illegal immigrants and should be treated like any other lawbreaker in a foreign land.
@dave what numbers of people are we talking about and could the French prison or judicial system cope if they do as you suggest?
I don’t mind the idea of genuine short-term help to a small number of people who want it but what annoys me is the sense of entitlement they seem to think they have. We can’t have a situation where anyone living in a country with a bit of conflict rumbling on or with a government we’d consider a bit authoritarian to then effectively have a worldwide free travel pass to go settle in any country of their choosing and be treated to a free ride for life. It’s all very well offering help and aid and all the rest of it, but the sheer number of people who could in theory claim that status would be enough to overwhelm most of Europe, never mind the UK.
I hear what you are saying, and I do understand, but do you accept your position of immense privilege in holding those opinions? Your statements like “We can’t have a situation where anyone living in a country with a bit of conflict rumbling on…” suggest a bit of a lack of empathy for people who have had their homes, livelihoods and at times, family, destroyed by bombs. It also suggests that you can’t imagine how these people might feel to have too little to eat most days, no decent education of work opportunities etc, while all the while seeing and hearing that life is so much better elsewhere. The history of many of the regions where the refugees begin their journeys might also give us some responsibility to these people. We don’t like a postcode lottery when it comes to healthcare within our own country, but we seem happy to accept that those born in some other countries are much more likely to live in poverty or be killed in conflict. I’m not quite sure what the solution is, but your views do seem to come principallu from the perspective of a small child not wanting to share their sweeties with those who have none.
Is the UK already at the limit in terms of the help it can provide to such people? If not, then how – in your view – could we do more?