The Press: The uninvited
The British press recently set a record-five consecutive days in which the phrase “bogus asylum-seekers” did not appear. These were the days immediately after the discovery that 58 clandestine migrants from China had asphyxiated in a sealed container bound for Dover from Belgium.
The Daily Mail (24 June) showed how good a paper it can be when it applies its considerable resources to honest reporting. Its reporter, Rebecca Fowler, dispatched a two page story from Fujian Province, southern China, in which the reasons why so many young people leave for the West were sympathetically explored. The Sun (22 June) picked up another stowaway story. This time it was 24 people trying to leave Britain in a freight train bound for Milan. The language was unusually restrained: “Migrants make tracks,” said the headline.
The tragedy of the 58 drew the fire away from asylum seekers and towards the traffickers, whom all