Britain has pledged additional support for Greece in its effort to manage the inflow of refugees and migrants from Turkey, the Home Office said in an announcement on Tuesday.
During a meeting in London with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, British premier Theresa May announced the deployment of an additional Border Force cutter “to assist with vital search and rescue operations that have already saved more than 13,000 lives,” as well as additional interpreters to ease pressures on the Greek islands.
The leaders also discussed ways to enhance efforts to implement the EU-Turkey agreement in the face of continuing migratory pressures.
“Today’s announcement is a strong symbol of the will of both governments to work together to tackle the challenges posed by illegal migration and maintain the momentum of the EU-Turkey agreement,” British Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said. “It builds on the vital humanitarian work already carried out by Border Force cutters in both the Mediterranean and the Aegean, often done in extremely challenging circumstances.”
“The meeting between the two prime ministers today is just the start of a process which will develop specific areas of cooperation, supported by an action plan which I will be taking forward,” Nokes added.
The additional Border Force cutter will work alongside HMC Valiant, which was deployed in May 2015 as part of an agreement with the Hellenic Coast Guard.