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Bishop of Dover urges kindness amid English Channel migrant concerns
The Bishop of Dover has encouraged the UK to show kindness towards migrants attempting perilous crossings of the English Channel.
Speaking as the home secretary declared a "major incident" in waters off the south coast of England at the weekend, Rt Rev Trevor Willmott called for a compassionate response.
He was quoted by The Guardian newspaper as saying: "It is crucial that we all remember that we are dealing with human beings here.
"Across the nation, we have been celebrating the season of hope and goodwill as we remember Christ's birth - let's not forget so soon that every person is precious."
Bishop Trevor's comments echo previous messages from the Church of England, which has urged "fair" treatment for everyone affected by global migration - something it describes as "one of the biggest issues of our time".
Sajid Javid returned early from his Christmas break to respond to a recent rise in the number of people risking their lives by attempting to reach Britain on small boats.
Writing in the Sunday Mirror, the shadow home secretary Diane Abbott said the Conservatives "cannot seem to get a grip" on the operations by illegal people smugglers.
More than 40 people tried to cross the English Channel and enter the UK on Christmas Day.
Mr Javid (pictured above) pledged to do more to tackle the issue.
A Border Force RIB vessel was pictured on patrol in Dover Harbour on Saturday.
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