28-year-old Sudanese, Abdulfatah Hamdallah, dies trying to reach the UK in small boat

A 28-year-old Sudanese man, Abdulfatah Hamdallah, has died while trying to reach the United Kingdom in a small boat.

According to reports, Hamdallah attempted to cross the English Channel in a dinghy, using shovels as oars.

The Sudanese’s body was discovered on Sangatte beach, near Calais, on Wednesday, three hours after a rescue operation ended.

Investigators have been told by a friend that he had earlier sought asylum in France, but said they did not know the outcome of the application.

He had been living in a makeshift camp in Calais for two months, prosecutor Philippe Sabatier said

“We don’t know what his route was between Sudan and France,” he added.

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A search and rescue operation began at about 02:00 BST on Wednesday after a Sudanese teenager with hypothermia was found on the beach.

He told authorities that his friend was missing and could not swim.

French authorities initially believed he was 16, but later found he was carrying an identity document stating he was 28.

Home Secretary Priti Patel was criticised on Wednesday after saying the death was a “brutal reminder of the abhorrent criminal gangs and people smugglers who exploit vulnerable people”.

Labour MP Nick Thomas-Symonds, the shadow home secretary, said the government’s response to the rise in crossings had been “lacking in compassion and competence”.

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Dan O’Mahoney, a former Royal Marine appointed early this month to the new role of “clandestine Channel threat commander”, met French authorities in Paris and Calais on Thursday.

He held “positive discussions about enhancing operations with increased surveillance, aerial support, further intelligence sharing and patrols in northern France”, he said.

“This week’s incident, where a Sudanese migrant lost his life attempting to cross the Channel, served as a tragic reminder of the vital importance of the work the UK and France are engaged in to make this route completely unviable,” he added.

On Friday, five men in a boat were picked up by Border Force amid high winds in the Channel.

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