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Rescue teams scrambled to search Channel after latest crossings run into trouble

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Rescue teams have been scrambled to search the Channel for people risking their lives in small boats following a string of 999 calls.

It comes just a little over a week since 27 people drowned making the perilous crossing.

It is unclear how many people were rescued overnight after attempting the crossing in darkness following a bout of windy weather.

However, it is believed the number could be as high as 100, as agencies continue to search the world's busiest shipping lane. Pictures show RBLI boats with people on-board - including young children - arriving back in Dover this morning.

A coastguard spokesman said it responded to a "number of incidents" and will continue to rescue those in danger.

RNLI was involved in the rescue. Picture: UKNIP
RNLI was involved in the rescue. Picture: UKNIP

They added: "HM Coastguard is currently coordinating a search and rescue response to a number of incidents off Kent, working with Border Force.

"We have sent Dover RNLI lifeboat, the HM Coastguard fixed wing aircraft and Border Force vessel Valiant.

"HM Coastguard will continue to safeguard life around the seas and coastal areas of the UK, working with search and rescue resources in the area.

"If a vessel needs search and rescue assistance, HM Coastguard will continue to respond and rescue those in danger."

Young children were among those rescued. Picture: UKNIP
Young children were among those rescued. Picture: UKNIP

The Home Office has been contacted for comment.

A total of 27 individuals lost their lives in the Channel last week after their inflatable dinghy sunk off the French coast.

Among the dead publicly identified were a pregnant woman, children and a 24-year-old Kurdish woman from northern Iraq trying to reunite with her fiancé.

It comes amid growing tension between UK and French officials over how to tackle the on-going crisis.

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