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Good Morning Britain viewers were shocked as they watched three migrants struggling to cross the Channel in an inflatable kayak, prompting presenter Jonathan Swain to offer help. 

Susanna Reid and Ed Balls discussed claims that the number of migrants risking the Channel crossing could soar to 100,000 a year unless the UK and France agree a new deal to police the route. It was also revealed that around 4,000 people crossed the English Channel in the first two weeks of November. 

The segment featured senior news correspondent Jonathan as he reported from a boat in the Channel. 

Along with footage of the Eritrean three men trying to paddle in the kayak on Tuesday morning, Swain told viewers: ‘They are struggling at the moment because they are certainly going the wrong way. The tide this morning is strong, it’s coming from left to right as we look at them and they are not heading to England.

‘That may be their intention but they are certainly pointing at the direction of the French coastline this morning. 

‘I think it’s pretty obvious to see they are migrants in the water. We’re going to keep distance away from them at the moment… That is just a perilous scene.’ 

Pre-empting criticism of why he wasn’t able to do more, Swain explained that maritime laws restrict how much they can offer to help. 

However, he later did offer to ‘call in’ help for the men. 

As their boats drew closer, Swain asked them: ‘Morning, do you need help?’ 

He then informed viewers: ‘The skipper will alert the emergency services and the coastguard here. There’s not any of them around at all. We’re not at liberty to intervene here, we can’t intervene. There’s lots of other reasons behind that… 

‘If they were in distress then you’d rescue them but for the moment, we’ll keep watch and see how they are.’ 

Swain then confirmed the migrants were able to speak English as they revealed they were from Eritrea and trying to head to England. However, he later shared an update that the three men were being taken to France as they were just two miles away from the coast. 

Showing empathy for the men, presenter Reid said: ‘No matter what you think, those are three men in an unsuitable vehicle,’ while her co-host Balls described it as ‘a frightening scene’. 

Reacting to the footage, one viewer tweeted: ‘These are people in a crisis situation, they need love, care, support & kindness. So so sad.’

Praising Swain for offering as much help as he was able to, one added: ‘@SwainITV and crew you can now add saving migrant lives to your CV.’

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV.

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