French police say they are now utilizing drones to patrol the English Channel amid a surge of migrant crossings and related incidents.
The new measures are part of a broader Franco-British action plan announced in January to "save more lives than to fight against illegal immigration," after a steady increase of illegal migrants and human traffickers began attempting to cross the Channel from France to Britain in the fall of 2018.
"Eight military officials attended drone pilot training from March 11 to 22," Pas-de-Calais prefecture explained in a press release, as reported by La Voix du Nord. "This training resulted in the qualification of six telepilots from the Pas-de-Calais grouping and two from the Northern grouping, which are now able to support, with the use of a drone, land patrols and helicopters and maritime means that can be engaged."
"The drones can be deployed as needed this week."
British authorities recently revealed that migrants have become so emboldened by the lack of disciplinary action being taken against illegal crossers, some are simply calling police from their boats to arrange pick-up.
"Illegal migrants are ringing police to collect them from boats in the Channel because they are so sure of avoiding being returned to their countries, MPs have been told," the London Times reported.
"The sea is like a duck pond," said retired coastguard officer Andy Roberts. "This is going to carry on and on. There will be lots more to come. The weather is so great for them. It's a perfect time for them."
The French port of Calais was plunged into chaos in early March when over 100 migrants stormed a ferry bound for the UK in what police called a "coordinated attack."
In January, a woman living near Kent discovered three migrant men, who had just illegally completed the Channel crossing, standing in her front yard.
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(PHOTO: GEORGES GOBET/AFP/Getty Images)