Pakistani migrant dies after attempting Channel Tunnel entrance


LILLE: A Pakistani migrant has died after being badly burnt while attempting to enter the Channel Tunnel in Calais in a bid to reach Britain, French officials said Monday.

“One of three migrants who were involved in the accident last week has died,” the northern Pas-de-Calais prefecture told AFP in a statement.

According to a migrant solidarity blog, the dead man was a 23-year-old Pakistani who succumbed on Friday to injuries he received on the night of July 13.

The three migrants had tried to board a ferry before entering the tunnel where they were hit by an electric charge.

The previous week, another migrant died in the Channel Tunnel.

In all, at least four people have died in and around the tunnel entrance in recent weeks, showing the risks incurred by migrants desperate to reach Britain.

Thousands of migrants are camped out around the port in the northern city of Calais, in the hope of climbing aboard lorries travelling to Britain on ferries or entering the nearby Channel Tunnel.

The migrants, whose presence has long caused friction between London and Paris, sometimes go to dramatic lengths to smuggle themselves into Britain, and have even been recorded trying to swim across the Channel.

In recent weeks, traffic through the Channel Tunnel has been repeatedly disrupted by protesting French sailors, as well as attempts by migrants to smuggle through the undersea passage.

The Eurotunnel company distributes pamphlets in nine languages near the tunnel to warn migrants of the risks involved in attempting to cross the Channel illegally.

Eurotunnel, which manages the Channel Tunnel and its vehicle shuttle services, also owns three ships that operate under the brand name MyFerryLink, which it bought from bankrupt French carrier SeaFrance in 2012.

SeaFrance crew members briefly blocked Calais port again on Monday angered by plans to sell two of the ships to rival ferry company DFDS.