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The Syrian Emigrant Camps in Calais Are Being Destroyed

category international | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Wednesday May 28, 2014 18:58author by calais migrant solidarity Report this post to the editors

*Now or never!*

*Everyone come to Calais !!!!*

The authorities have decided to destroy the three main camps, which shelter around 700 people. The only prospect for the inhabitants: a pill against scabies and life in the street! There can be no question of repeating the events of 2009, when the eviction of the Afghan jungle resulted in the arrest of hundreds of migrants, their detainment all over France and attempts to deport them to Afghanistan. There can be no question, after five years of persecution, of starting all over again from zero, while the machine of repression gears up once more. Never again!

Last September, the yearly season of raids and evictions, the authorities collided with the courage and determination of the Syrian community of Calais, who, to oppose this repression, fought back by occupying the port. Some of us remember those images, in which two of them can be seen on the roof, threatening to throw themselves into the void to ward off the cavalcade of CRS determined to evict them. And of the CRS giving up, standing idly by, powerless spectators of the courage and determination of those who they could not defeat…

These refugees from Syria demanded the right to come and go freely, to be treated like human beings, and even if they were not able to cross to England, their struggle resulted, at the very least, in the many tents of the ‘Syrian camp’. Named in reference to this episode, the camp has been able to hold out until now. The police have been forced to harass the camp more discretely, fearing a new wave of radical contestation. It is this ‘Syrian camp’ and those it inspired who are threatened today, but also the camp under the bridge. The Eritreans, who where evicted from their house in mid-October, decided to create a camp below the bell tower of the Town Hall. What courage, to set up camp under Bouchart’s very nose, who had no choice but to see the inhuman consequences of her racist policies.

To let these camps be destroyed with impunity would be an insult to the memory of this exemplary struggle, for which some were ready to give their lives. To allow, in silence, a horde of CRS trample these spaces of life, resistance and solidarity, would mean to forget what the Syrians were fighting for, people whom many of us know, who have faces and names, who are resisting and jamming the works of the mechanisms of destruction and dehumanization to which they are subjected.

We must pay homage to their courage and their determination. The Syrians have shown us the way, given us insight into the power of resistance and the fear that we are all capable of instilling in our oppressors, taking ground piece by piece. They took the risk at the beginning, demonstrating that they are ready to pay whatever price that respect and dignity might cost.

Right now, in the camps, there are migrants of all nationalities, who give life to these spaces of resistance every day. We should fight to hold onto these spaces of struggle, which the authorities want nothing more than to destroy, harass and render invisible until the migrants ask nicely to go home. Only struggle pays off!

We call for everyone to come to Calais on the night of the 26th and the morning of the 27th to resist the eviction of the camps! There was a time when we were isolated and powerless in the face of their repression, but now, after five years of struggle, we have all the means necessary to make a network of action. So let’s mobilize in force! Come fight along side the migrants!

*We must beat the authorities and it’s now or never!*

author by Crazy Catpublication date Sun Aug 03, 2014 16:21Report this post to the editors

This article is in French so I've done a translation here for you.

The port and the industrial zone of Calais under tension, the migrants have ' nothing to loose'.

In the port of Calais the lights are red with the influx of immigrants. The security personnel and the police unions feel overwhelmed and ask the government to, at last, take their responsabilaty.

The misfortune of the port of Calais is to support the English border on its site since the agreements Touquet in 2003.
When there are 200 migrants in Calais, security is controlled. Today, they are at least a thousand and the port explodes. The scene is impressive. As soon as the trucks slow on the ring road towards the port, "clusters" of migrants - nearly 200 - storm them. As if possessed by madness to leave Calais faster, some use stones to stop the trucks. Truckers do not hesitate to reply, baseball bats and iron bars in hand.

Migrants are now acting in daylight and have "nothing to lose". "They are so poorly received they want at any cost to get out of here, says Philippe Wannesson, author of the blog migrant support ' Smugglers Hospitalities'.
These exiles have no more money and are outside the smuggling networks. Their strategy is to try to go through by pressure in the trucks. "The dismantling of the camps in May which led to a greater casualization of the population in transit has not helped. The risks taken are becoming larger: Exiles climb security gates of the port, jump into the water to board boats, jump on running trucks.

The alarm was first called by the police union SGP Police Unit-FO.
"We need at least two additional companies in the port so that there is a deterrent, said Gilles Debove, head of the union at Calais. Colleagues say they feel that they are emptying the ocean with a slotted cylinder. Migrants are no longer afraid of the uniform. "The regional union official, Thierry Depuyt, added:" Calais is a problem which you're not to talk about, which is highly sensitive. But we, we want the problem to be heard in Paris. "


In June, employees of Global Protection, responsible for overseeing the port area at night, also responded by disengaging "We are three agents for a huge space with every night a hundred migrants trying to cross.
"This month, the CGT Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI), which manages the port, came out of the silence and speaks of" impotence "by calling the state's responsibilities. "Something escapes us, we fear an accident," said Assistant Secretary of the CGT works council. At the head of the ICC, President Jean-Marc Puissesseau is angry: "I do not want there to be a loss of traffic and revenue because we fail to curb what happens with hordes of migrants. This hardline behavior is intolerable . The Prefecture hears us, we want to be heard above. "

Transport companies have diverted their convoys to Belgium after damages: two trains for Walon, two buses for Euro Cargo Rail.
The departmental representative of the National Federation of Road Transport, Sebastian Rivera, has been echoed: "Companies have had their equipment and goods damaged. Drivers fear fines of 2,000 pounds (2,500 euros) for each clandestine found in their truck. "

The prefecture said "have reinforced the number of police there a few weeks ago but the responsibility is collective.
"The ICC is considering adding fence and surveillance cameras at the port. But according to a militant CGT ICC " A thousand CRS and grids in addition does not change the problem. We will not change the port to Guantanamo with watchtowers. "

The agreements were signed Touquet February 4, 2003 between France and England.
They aim to strengthen cooperation between the two countries in terms of immigration, notably with the introduction of controls in the ports of the two countries. Several elected officials calling this into question.

As President PS Regional Council, Daniel Percheron. "This treaty was negotiated by the State at the expense of local players, said yesterday Francois Delagrange, his chief of staff.
Support for this flow of migrants should be left to the British. However, with this treaty, the border is moved to Calais. "Owner of the port, the Region "would lose " tens of million each year just to ensure the safety of the place:" But the Chamber of Commerce Calais, which manages the site could make better use of that money which should be paid by the State. "To address this loss, Daniel Percheron would establish a port charge for users of the ferry or tunnel. "We have requested the Prime Minister, this is already happening in airports. "

Regional Councillor Bertrand PC Péricaud believes that the influx of migrants' threatens part of port activity "and hopes that" the government put in place an exceptional humanitarian measure, allowing migrants to go to Britain. "

Natacha Bouchart, on his side, Mayor of Calais (UMP), advocates the revision of agreements Touquet and proposes "to share the passage between France and England with gauges in the number of migrants: if there are 600, each takes 300 for example. The British are those who give the most benefit in terms of immigration and those are the ones who block their border. "S. F.-P. and T. C.

The context

Since May, at the initiative of the prefecture and the municipality, the dismantling of the migrant camps and squats continue.
Simply moving of the problem; exiles continue to camp in the port city in the hope of a passage to England which dosen't have the look of Eldorado. The tightening of immigration laws, decided this week by the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, proves it a little more. It remains that removing any attachment point for migrants, this series of evacuations caused a significant increase in intrusion attempts in trucks waiting to board the harbor and a lot of tense face-to-face with truck drivers.

Another site under tension , the area of ​​activity of the Dunes, where a wild camp hosts hundreds of exiles. Again, repeated intrusions in trucks result in incidents which have also led to the temporary closure of a roadhouse. The problem goes beyond local actors and is to a minimum statewide. The Interior Minister, Bernard Cazeneuve could get in a visit in the fall. One more since the closure of the Sangatte camp in 2002. DM

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