An international crackdown was launched on Tuesday in five European countries, including Germany and France, to dismantle a network of migrant smugglers to Great Britain, German police announced.

These smugglers organized clandestine crossings of the English Channel for migrants wishing to reach Great Britain, according to the German magazine

Der Spiegel


“Several searches and arrests” took place in several regions of Germany, including that of Lower Saxony, said the Osnabrück police in a press release.

A simultaneous operation in five countries

This city in western Germany is considered a large rear base for smuggling networks to Great Britain, a French border police official told AFP in April.

In addition to Germany and France, police operations were also underway in Belgium, the Netherlands and Great Britain, added the German police, adding that "hundreds" of police were mobilized on this occasion.

No further details were provided but according to

Der Spiegel

, quoting the Osnabrück police, this network of smugglers, mainly Iraqi Kurds, would have organised, "over the past 12 to 18 months" the crossing of approximately "10,000 people on inflatable boats" to Great Britain.

Asked by AFP, the Osnabrück police did not confirm this information.

Explosion of attempted crossings

A French police official also assured, in April, that the Iraqi Kurdish community was at the origin of the phenomenon of "small boats", which emerged in 2019 and has since supplanted attempts to reach Great Britain by trucks.

Attempts to cross the Channel illegally by migrants wishing to reach England exploded in the first half of 2022. migrants had succeeded, according to the same source.

A network of migrant smugglers dismantled in the south


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  • Migrants

  • smugglers

  • Germany

  • Hauts-de-France

  • Illegal immigration

  • Justice