Migrants in Calais sleeping on the streets

[Etienne Laurent/EPA]

TMP – 25/06/2017
Migrants are sleeping rough on Calais’ streets since the demolishment of “the Jungle” migrant camp in in October last year.

10,000 migrants, mainly from the Middle East and East African countries, were displaced when French authorities bulldozed the Calais camp in Northern France.  Many moved to reception centres across the country but the vast majority have resorted to sleeping rough.

Baz, a 25-year-old migrant from Afghanistan, has been in Calais for 20 months. He used to live in the Jungle but now has no tent and nowhere to sleep.Aid workers say the conditions for migrants in Calais are now very poor. “We don’t have water, we don’t have food — and no sanitation,” said Clare Moseley, the founder of Care4Calais. “There’s skin disease, gum disease. It really, really is the absolute basics of life here.”

“Calais people don’t like refugees,” said Kiya Rabbira, 16, from Ethiopia, who was sheltering  with his friend outside  drive-in Pizza Hut in central Calais. “They’re always calling the police, and they never give us food. They see us sleeping here, and say, ‘don’t sleep here — go.’

The French authorities have recently authorized the transfer of an additional 150 additional police officers and gendarmes to the Calais region. “Our priority is that Calais and Dunkirk do not remain places of fixation and that ‘Jungles’ do not reconstitute,” said Gérard Collomb, the French Interior Minister.