On a visit to Calais camp last September, President of France, Francois Holland, set up an action plan to dismantle the camp and relocate over 3000 migrants to reception centres in several locations around the country. Holland declared that this step has been taken because of humanitarian reasons related to inappropriate life conditions inside the camp, adding that France “can be more dignified and responsible”, especially with people fleeing war and terror.

Besides that, French residents in Calais blame the refugees for being violent, and truck drivers making the crossing between England and the continent have faced a huge pressure as refugees have tried to hide on their vehicles. This accident forced the French authorities to take more serious and efficient procedures to clean the camp.

The first operation of clearing the camp – started in late October- began to move more than 1600 migrants by buses to reception centres for a limited period of three to four months. each shelter is expected to hold 40 or 50 people while their asylum cases are examined and those who do not seek for the asylum will be deported. The interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve said that 400 of those refugees are children and 1918 are adults.

Migrants have been divided into groups according to their family status, including families, single men and unaccompanied minors. However, some of the migrants try to resist to be relocated as they hope to reach Britain which lies just 26 miles away across the English Channel. The UK has agreed to take in a number of unaccompanied minors from the camp, as well as others with family ties in the country including 90 girls who were at high risk of sexual exploitation.

While the process of demolishing the notorious Calais camp continues, more refugees from Africa and the Middle East are flooding to Europe, leaving behind their homelands in ruin.

– Hadjer Benounane, Correspondent (Our World)

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