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UK coast guards rescuing people from small boats in Channel

LONDON — British coast guards say they are conducting a search-and-rescue mission after small boats believed to contain migrants were spotted in the English Channel.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency says it is “coordinating a search and rescue response to a number of incidents off Kent,” a county in southeast England.

Coast guards said Friday those rescued would be brought to shore, “where they will be handed over to the relevant partner emergency services or authorities.”

Last week the U.K.’s Border Force detained 37 people in small boats, including several children.

There has been an increase in the number of people trying to cross the English Channel to Britain in small vessels, though the numbers are tiny compared to the thousands crossing the Mediterranean to countries such as Spain, Italy and Greece.

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