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Cameron should come see the chaos at Calais for himself, say hauliers

By Tim Sculthorpe

Published 04/08/2015

Invitation: David Cameron
Invitation: David Cameron

The Government has a grip on the migrant crisis at Calais, Philip Hammond has insisted as David Cameron faces calls to break his holiday and witness its impact "first-hand".

The Road Haulage Association (RHA) has urged Mr Cameron to visit Calais and see what lorry drivers are experiencing for himself.

But emerging from a long meeting of the Government's emergency Cobra committee, the Foreign Secretary said the Government had the crisis in hand.

Mr Hammond said 100 additional guards would be on duty at the terminal in Calais, while UK Border Force officials would start working inside the Eurotunnel control room tonight.

He said: "I think we have got a grip on the crisis. We saw a peak last week, since when the number of illegal migrants has tailed off.

"We have taken a number of measures in collaboration with the French authorities and Eurotunnel which are already having an effect and over the next day or two I would expect to have an even greater effect."

Mr Hammond did not directly address Mr Cameron's absence, due to end on Thursday before he takes further time away from the office.

The RHA's call comes as pressure on the Government to secure a long-term solution to the emergency continues.

RHA chief executive Richard Burnett said: "Without witnessing the mayhem at Calais first-hand, neither the Prime Minister nor his advisers can fully grasp the severity of the situation.

"I have therefore issued an invitation to David Cameron to travel with him across the Channel to see for himself the appalling conditions that drivers are facing."

Lorries have repeatedly been targeted by migrants desperately trying to reach Britain.

The crisis is said to have cost the economy millions of pounds as hauliers are forced to dispose of contaminated goods and wait in mammoth queues before they can cross the Channel.

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