Wednesday, 28 May 2014

French police migrants from Calais camps

Police in the northern French city of Calais are removing about 800 migrants from Asia, the Middle East and Africa who are occupying camps near the port.
The authorities say the evictions are needed to deal with an outbreak of scabies in the camps, where numbers have swelled in recent months.
The migrants have been trying to get to Britain, and say they have nowhere else to go after the camps are destroyed.
Police moved into the site after a deadline for people to leave expired.
  Several busloads of police in riot gear arrived at the camps early on Wednesday.
After a stand-off with local activists, the officers moved in and told migrants to pack their bags. Many seem resigned to moving on, the BBC's Paul Adams at the site says.
An Eritrean man said he had tried to cross the English Channel by boarding lorries but was stopped by police several times. "I will try again and again," he told the BBC.
Local officials say the migrants will be transported to new accommodation somewhere in the region, although many of them will be unhappy with that, our correspondent says.
Eritrean migrants take cover from the rain under an umbrella during the daily food distribution at the harbour in Calais The migrants are desperate to get to the UK
Afghan migrants rest under blankets in the courtyard at a food distribution centre The camps are all near the port - and many migrants have already tried several times to cross the Channel
An Afghan migrant looks out the window of his makeshift shelter at the harbour in Calais Conditions inside the camps were poor, but now the migrants say they will have nowhere to go
Most people at the camps believe the UK will be a more welcoming place if only they can get there, he adds.
In 2002 the French government closed the main Red Cross centre at Sangatte near Calais, but insanitary illegal camps have sprung up in its place.
Paul Adams looked around the camp before the police arrived
The migrants have been sheltering under plastic bags and sheets, without water, power or even enough food.
The camps are a few hundred metres from a terminal where ferries take passengers and goods back and forth between France and the UK.



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