On Thursday, 235 people were brought ashore, a record number for a single day. More than 650 have arrived so far in August, including babies and unaccompanied children.
Patel has said the Royal Navy could be called in to prevent boats reaching UK waters, though other senior officials and politicians say that would be impractical and potentially dangerous.
On Saturday the Ministry of Defense said it had received a government request to support U.K. Border Force operations and was looking into how it could best help.
Migrants have long used northern France
as a launching point to reach Britain, either in trucks through the Channel tunnel or on ferries.
Some have turned to small boats organized by smugglers because coronavirus lockdowns have reduced opportunities to stow away on ferries and trucks.
Fine summer weather is also prompting more people to make the risky journey across one of the world's busiest shipping lanes about 20 miles (32 kilometers) at its narrowest point in vessels as small as dinghies and kayaks The British and French immigration ministers are due to hold talks this week about the Channel crossings.
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