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Call for Evidence

The role of the military in countering migrant crossings (Operation Isotrope)

This submission form is not currently public. Please only use this form if invited to do so by the committee, otherwise your submission might not be considered.

Terms of reference for a session into the role of the military in countering migrant crossings (Op Isotrope)

The Committee welcomes written submissions on some or all of the following points before 9am Tuesday 25 January to help inform the session:

  • What should the role of the Navy be in countering migrant crossings of the Channel?
  • What was the process that led to the decision to start the operation and was the National Security Council involved? How does this fit within the terms of the Integrated Review?
  • What are the operational and political (A) reporting arrangements and (B) associated chain of command, up to and including Cabinet?
  • What capabilities do the Armed Forces, particularly the Royal Navy, bring that were not available to the Border Force?
  • Is this a permanent move of Border Force policy from HO to MOD and will the budget be moved accordingly?
  • What assets will be engaged (including personnel and the military estate)? Will the Army and the RAF be involved?
  • What will the rules of engagement be? Under what legal basis is the operation taking place?
  • What military engagement and cooperation will there be with the French armed forces and civilian authorities?
  • What is the potential impact on other Defence commitments?
  • What role will the private sector play, for example in the supply of equipment and crew?
  • What consideration will be given to training the Border Force to take over operations?
  • How long is the operation expected to last? How will its success be measured? How will mission creep be prevented?
  • What are the projected costs of the operation? Who will pay them?

Form of written evidence: 

Submissions should be no longer than 3,000 words and do not need to address every term of reference. The main body of any submission should use numbered paragraphs. Each submission should contain: 

  • a short summary, perhaps in bullet point form;
  • a brief introduction about the person or organisation submitting evidence, for example explaining their area of expertise or experience;
  • any factual information from which the Committee might be able to draw conclusions, or which could be put to the witnesses; 
  • any recommendations for action by the Government or others which the submitter would like the Committee to consider.

Submissions should be in malleable format such as MS Word (not PDFs) with no use of colour or logos. Guidance on submitting written evidence and data protection information is available here: Guidance on submitting written evidence

Deadline for submissions 

The Committee is asking for written evidence to be submitted through the Committee’s web portal by 09:00 Tuesday 25 January 2022.  

It is recommended that all submitters familiarise themselves with the Guidance on giving evidence to a Select Committee of the House of Commons which outlines particulars of word count, format, document size, and content restrictions. 


We encourage members of underrepresented groups to submit written evidence. We aim to have diverse panels of Select Committee witnesses and ask organisations to bear this in mind when we ask them to choose a representative. We are currently monitoring the diversity of our witnesses.