Massive police operation against illegals
Police services on Tuesday staged a massive police operation against illegals in and around the Flemish ports of Zeebrugge and Ostend.
The Belgian police services on Tuesday staged a massive police operation against illegals in and around the Flemish ports of Zeebrugge and Ostend (West Flanders).
In all eighty officers checked cars and trucks in the ports and in the vicinity.
Five illegals were detained.
Police commissioner Perneel told VRT that the number of illegals trying to get to the UK via the Flemish ports had been falling steadily in recent years, but in recent months more and more illegals had been trying their luck.
In order to counter the rise the police staged a major action last night. Smaller operations are planned in the course of the month.
Commissioner Perneel insisted that preventative action would reap its rewards: "People-traffickers, the people behind the human-trafficking networks, read the newspapers for sure."
Figures from the Erasmus University of Rotterdam (The Netherlands) suggest there are 100,000 illegals in Belgium.
The figure is based on information from hospitals and the police.
Interviews with asylum seekers show that most people want to escape poverty.
Researchers point out that the one-off regularisation drive in 2000 is still motivating many illegals to come to Belgium.