On Monday at 8.30am a protest, initiated by the people on hunger strike, took place. This was first brought to a community meeting on Friday and timed to be seen by police and prefecture when they first arrived for another day of destruction. Despite the exhaustion of 9 days of evictions, on Sunday many people from across the jungle worked together to create signs, placards and banners to support this action. Some refugees, responding to the callout, expressed their concern that actually, the authorities do not care if refugees starve themselves, one speaking from direct experience of December’s hunger strike in Lampedusa. Although many journalists were present to take photos of the hunger strikers and children offering white flowers in the mud and snow, it was largely ignored by english and french media. The hunger strikers made once more clear that they will continue their protest until they get heard.
We request to the French authorities that the appeal is heard urgently before the European Court of Human Rights and that the eviction of the Calais jungle is suspended until all legal proceedings are concluded.
Beside of the clear statement of stopping the evictions from happening there were more demands from the people on hunger strike:
(The intention, which was originally written in the statement from the 3rd March, to stop drinking water, was retracted.)
Demolition of shelters ongoing
The protest was unheard by police and authorities: In the meantime, the south zone of the jungle is getting further destroyed the same day and people are still getting forced out of their houses. Where people in the Eritraen area were determined to remain in their houses, and to oblige the police to make the violence of the eviction visible, they were forced to leave when a fire started in a neighbouring house behind police lines. The police then pushed forward their line, not allowing volunteers who wanted to put out the fire to do so.