The body of a suspected asylum seeker who may have been attempting to reach the Kent coast has been discovered on a beach just outside Calais, according to French authorities.
A dead man, aged between 20 and 40, was reportedly wearing an orange life jacket when he was found on the shores of Sangatte, in northern France, on Sunday morning.
Pascal Marconville, a Boulogne-sur-Mer prosecutor, said the man had “no identity documents on him”, as he ruled out any third-party involvement.
It is feared he drowned trying to make the 21-mile crossing of the strait of Dover.
Marconville told the regional French paper Voix Du Nord: “The position of the body and the absence of trampling around suggest that his body was thrown back by the sea.”
In August, a young Sudanese refugee, later identified as Abdulfatah Hamdallah, was found dead on the same beach after trying to cross the Channel with another boy in an inflatable dinghy with shovels for oars.
Campaigners claimed the unsanitary conditions in Calais and alleged abuse by French police officials force many refugees to embark on the dangerous journey in search of a better life.
“It’s desperately sad to hear that another refugee has lost his life trying to cross the English Channel. We can only imagine the pain his friends and family must be feeling now and our hearts go out to them. The refugees in Calais form close-knit, supportive communities and this death will hit them all hard,” Clare Moseley, founder of Care4Calais, said.
“Refugees take this risk because they are frightened, fleeing appalling horrors in some of the most dangerous places on Earth. They do it because of the grim and unsanitary conditions in Calais, where they are constantly harassed and abused by the authorities. They do it because there is no safe and legal way to have their UK asylum claim heard.”
More than 6,100 migrants have arrived in the UK on small boats so far this year, with last month the record for migrant Channel crossings.
Campaigners and opposition politicians have criticised the government for lacking compassion in dealing with the small-boat crossings and not making it easier for people to legitimately seek asylum in the UK.