Brexiteers fume after RNLI launched to help migrants crossing English Channel

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought into Dover, Kent, onboard the Dover RNLI lifebo

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought into Dover, Kent, onboard the Dover RNLI lifeboat. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire. - Credit: PA

Brexiteers have fumed after the RNLI was launched to help save migrants getting into difficulty attempting to cross the English Channel.

Led By Donkeys' display projected onto the White Cliffs of Dover featuring the story of Syrian refugee Hassan Akkad. Photogr...

Led By Donkeys' display projected onto the White Cliffs of Dover featuring the story of Syrian refugee Hassan Akkad. Photograph: Led By Donkeys/PA Wire .

The lifeboat was launched from Dover on Wednesday to help assist dozens of migrants, including some children, that got into difficulty in British waters.

It happened on the same day that a 16-year-old was found dead on a French beach after a desperate attempt to reach the UK.


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The Sudanese teenager was said to have fallen overboard from an inflatable dinghy.

A Coastguard spokesperson confirmed it had responded to an incident off Dover, as photographs and videos circulated online of migrants climbing on board their boat.


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The spokesperson said: 'This morning we have been assisting Border Force with incidents off Dover.

'HM Coastguard is committed to safeguarding life around the seas and coastal areas of this country.

'We are only concerned with preservation of life, rescuing those in trouble and bringing them safely back to shore, where they will be handed over to the relevant partner emergency services or authorities.'

The news that the RNLI had gone out to help struggling migrants prompted Brexiteers to fume.

Former UKIP MEP Godfrey Bloom reacted by claiming: 'Given my last pound to RNLI. Another politicised charity.'

Another Brexiteer replied: 'Will never give the a penny to the RNLI again'.

MORE: Daily Mail readers slammed for celebrating death of 16-year-old refugee

One calling himself 'Brit Viking 2.0' responded: 'Used to love going to the RNLI gift shop as a kid, even now and then I used to drop in to pick a pen or something up, never again.'

'Why not just be done with it and get the Royal Brittania [sic] to bring them across?' asked another, while John Hendry tweeted: 'RNLI - Royal National Lifeline for Refugees'.

But scores more questioned the anger, pointing out the very purpose of the RNLI and its lifeboats.

Twitter user Caz Holbrook questioned Bloom's claim. 'So.... a charitable organisation whose reason for existence is to rescue those in danger on the sea is being attacked for rescuing those in danger on the sea? What is wrong with some people? Oh yeah, I forgot these people are the wrong colour...'

'So sorry to hear you're now skint Godders,' quipped one in response.

'I'm willing to bet you were screaming 'All Lives Matter' just a few weeks ago,' noted another.

'That is their job. You decided to politicise the RNLI,' replied Bob Shiltz.

More bluntly Andy McGrath told the Brexiteer: 'It's called a LIFEboat for a reason you soft tw*t!'

• To donate to the RNLI visit the official website here.

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