France’s Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said the country is ready for a serious debate with Britain on matters connected to illegal migration, but would not be kept hostage by London’s domestic politics.
The two countries are already at odds over post-Brexit trade rules and fishing rights, and ties deteriorated further last week after 27 people died attempting to cross the English Channel.
Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister, wrote to Emmanuel Macron, the French President, outlining five steps the two countries should do to prevent migrants from making the perilous trek. One of these, returning illegal migrants to France, enraged Paris particularly.
After Johnson published the letter on Twitter, France cancelled an offer for British Interior Minister Priti Patel to attend a meeting with European peers on Sunday to discuss the matter.