French President Emmanuel Macron has urged the UK to facilitate asylum seekers and illegal work, in a bid to stem risky migration efforts across the Channel.
Mr Macron also accused the British government of reneging on promises on fishing licenses and betraying Franco-British friendship by signing a secret submarine deal with the United States and Australia. which foiled a rival French contract.
The British government “is not doing what it says,” Macron said at a press conference.
The two countries “must work together in good faith”, especially on migration, he said.
Thousands of migrants have left the French coasts in recent months in small inflatable boats in an attempt to reach Britain.
“Why are these women and men in such terrible conditions? Because they don’t want asylum in France, ”said Mr. Macron.
He urged Britain to create clearer asylum routes to deter people from making the dangerous crossing.
He also said some migrants are drawn to a UK business model that “depends on illegal foreign labor”.
Britain and France have accused each other of not doing enough to prevent the deaths of at least 27 migrants whose boat sank off Calais last month.
Mr Macron also said that France would decide on Friday with the European Commission on the next steps in the fishing dispute between France and Britain.
French fishermen are angry with the UK government for not granting more licenses to fish in UK waters after Brexit.
The fishing industry is economically small, but symbolically important to Britain and France.
“I love Great Britain. I love its inhabitants, ”said Mr. Macron.
“I terribly want to have a government that just wants to work in good faith.”