01 September 2016
"France is to gradually dismantle the “Jungle” refugee camp in Calais, the interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, has vowed.
Cazeneuve told the regional newspaper the Nord Littoral he would press ahead with the closure of the camp “with the greatest determination”, dismantling the site in stages, clearing the former wasteland where record numbers of refugees and migrants are sleeping rough in dire sanitary conditions as many hope to reach Britain.
He said France would create accommodation for thousands elsewhere in the country “to unblock Calais”."
See: France vows to dismantle 'Jungle' refugee camp in Calais (The Guardian, link)
This is far from the first time that French politicians have promised to dismantle the jungle. Demolitions took place in September 2009 on the orders of then-interior minister Eric Besson. Needless to say, it had little effect in the long-term.
Meanwhile, there will be a blockade of the port next week by French shopkeepers, police officers, truck drivers and others: Calais mayor predicts blockade 'chaos' for British travellers (BBC News, link)
As pointed out by Philippe Wanneson:
"Note that since the month of February all the demonstrations concerning the migration situation in Calais are prohibited on behalf of the state of emergency. But not this one."
See: The xenophobes whistle, the minister rushes … and lies (Passeurs d'hospitalités, link)
People are still urging the UK government to keep to its promise to accept unaccompanied refugee children living on mainland Europe: Calais 'Jungle' camp: UK urged to take in 400 refugee children (BBC News, link)
A recent joint UK-French statement said that the governments would seek to "bring unaccompanied asylum seeking children to the UK when in their best interest, in accordance with the Dublin III regulation." So far there has been little sign of this happening.
See: Response to Calais situation: more security measures (Statewatch News Online, 31 August 2016)
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