Category: News

This community is grieving.

A fourth person was killed on Friday night whilst in a truck trying to cross to England.

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Three people were in the truck and realised it was going in the wrong direction, so they made noise for the truck to stop. It braked suddenly and a person from Ethiopia hit his head. Paramedics were called but he was dead on arrival.

People from different camps gathered for a ceremony before the Sunday football.

It is four people now killed in one week. This community is grieving.

Fascist presence

Sauvons Calais had a presence in town during Saturday in la place d’Armes and went to the different squats. Eight persons gathered outside the squat Masséna for a short time. Sauvons Calais has made its return.

They announced on their new profile “Sauvons Calais (privé)” that they are holding a demo at la place d’Armes on 13 April at 2.30pm against “mass immigration, insecurity, pro-migrant people   and corrupt journalists.”

This manifestation is also organised with the more widespread network Génération Identitaire, who are a fascist network with an anti-islam focus.

Look for all possibilities of resistance.

 

 

Trois décès cette semaine à Calais

Trois décès confirmés cette semaine à Calais

Une personne originaire d’Éthiopie a été retrouvée dans le canal de calais aujourd’hui, à côté du campement connu comme étant le campement Érythréen. Il avait disparu depuis plusieurs jours.  

Une personne originaire d’Éthiopie a été percutée et tuée par un véhicule sur l’autoroute A26, il y a deux jours, près de l’aire de repos “Rely”. Le conducteur ne s’est pas arrêté.

Dans la nuit de dimanche à lundi, une personne originaire d’Albanie a été tuée, sur l’autoroute, à proximité de Calais.

Aujourd’hui s’est tenu une cérémonie au camp des érythréens pour dire au-revoir à nos ami-e-s disparu-e-s cette semaine. De nombreuses personnes se sont recueillies et ont mis à l’eau un radeau sur lequel était déposé des fleurs ainsi que des bougies. 

Three deaths in Calais this week

This week there have been three confirmed deaths in Calais.

An Ethiopian man was found in the river today, near the camp known as the Eritrean camp. He had been missing for some days.

A person from Ethiopia was struck and killed by a vehicle on the A 26 motorway, two days ago, near the rest area Rely. The driver did not stop.

On Sunday night, an Albanian man was killed on the motorway outside of Calais. 

Today, a ceremony was held at the river camp to say goodbye to friends lost this week. Many people gathered and released a float with flowers and candles on to the water.

Death

On Sunday one person got stabbed to death on the motorway outside Calais where trucks pass on route to England. On Saturday night another person shot, injured but survived, in a parking lot outside of Calais.  Image

This is a killing regime. This death will not be forgotten.

 

the week – 13th March.

A lot of people arrived in Calais with tensions in Dunkerque. Difficulties with crossing have intensified tense relations in parking lots.  The police have been much more violent in the parking areas where people try to cross. The police violence has changed focus from raiding peoples living spaces and daily arrests in the streets to unwitnessable night time control at the parking lots.

Police have been coming regularly to the camp by the food distribution. No raids have been happening in the tents/homes but arrests made when people are on the street, on the pavement next to the camp, waiting for the bus for going to the shower block.

Regular deportations have been made to Italy. People who get arrested and have their fingerprints in Italy get detained and deported under Dublin II almost daily.  The CRS made a big street operation early in week arresting people and pushing them back to Italy.

Antifascist Rally 1st March 2014

Gathering 1st March 2014, Place d’Armes, Calais.

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photos de la voix du nord

A call out was made for people to show their solidarity with the refugees and exiles in Calais who continue to be harassed and dehumanised by the fascist, racist cabal that run the municipality here, led by Natasha Bouchard.

At once the call out was taken up by other groups and friends who extended their own invitations. On the day a samba band of around thirty to forty people dressed in pink and silver turned the gathering into a festive and carnivalesque event with a mixture of locals, migrants, activists, representatives of other organisations like the CNT, DAL and some political parties. With the fascist attacks on the squatted farmhouse in Coulogne the weeks before, a strong presence of antifa was inevitable and had been call for. There was no way we were going to let the local fascists, police or others ruin this day.

A friendly baker set up a crepe stand making crepes for a donation or for free depending on what you could afford, tea and coffee too was on offer and SUD Territoriaux a trade union who often mobilise for the cause of the migrants, provided the sound system.

Several people took up the microphone to make speeches and read poems too. Afterwards there was music and dancing and merry making. At one point the samba band led a cortege of people on a walkabout through the town and past the town hall, the refugee camp at Pont Mollien, the hotel de police and return to Place d’Armes to continue the party in solidarity.

The gathering in all was a great success, with up to 300 people who came to make it what it was, many who felt that it should happen more often. Calais is changing, and it is not political parties and their hierarchical structures that are making the change, rather it is the people who live in this town and who love it that are making it change. People who are organising together in solidarity, not just for migrants but for themselves too, breaking down the barriers and borders and empowering themselves.

Lets hope that we don’t have to wait too long for other initiatives like this to take place here in Calais, there is a movement on the go here and it needs to grow…

Calais Communiqué, 3 impasse Leclercq re-squatted

http://en.squat.net/2014/03/02/calais-communique-3-impasse-leclercq-re-squatted/#more-10992

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“Hello neighbours, hello whoever concerned,

We are the people who squatted the house on 3 impasse Leclercq, Calais. On Friday February 28th, the police arrived at the house and smashed the door to get inside to the house. They use violence to get in and took all of us to the police station. Four hours later, we were all out without charges. Living in a house has nothing illegal. The police is well aware of that but they don’t respect the law in Calais. Justice has to decide if we have to go, not the police.

Today, we are back for several reasons. First, because we are still legally allowed to live in this house. But the motivations that push us to come back today are not only based on law articles.

We don’t understand why a house that could shelter people in need, should become a ghost house. We don’t understand why it should be crime to live, eat, sleep and laugh in a house that is soon promised to demolition. We don’t understand why people get angry from what we’re doing.

We are back in order to find out the answers to these questions. We would like to start discussing with you. We are human-beings like you and you can talk to us. We encourage you to come and ask us questions.

We hope that we’ll manage to be your neighbours for some time. And we’d like to know you.”

Illegal Eviction of Occupied House in Calais

http://en.squat.net/2014/03/01/illegal-eviction-of-occupied-house-in-calais/

http://fr.squat.net/2014/03/01/calais-quatre-nouveaux-squats-nouvelle-expulsion-illegale/

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The mayor of Calais ranks amongst the most extreme Right in France!

Today (28/02), an occupied house belonging to the Municipality, located at 3 Impasse Leclercq, was illegally evicted in the early afternoon despite conclusive and legally sound evidence of it having been occupied for at least three days (meaning it should be entitled to a court case and notice under french law)! The media had been informed several hours before the eviction and two leading newspapers in the area had published proof of occupation. “La Voix de Nord” published an article showing a picture of this proof, sealed registered letters with the sent date, Wednesday, February 26, 2014 in which there were testimonies and timestamped photos showing that the occupation of the building had been for longer than 48 hours.

The Municipality chose to deliberately ignore this evidence and demand the expulsion of the house. What reasons do they have to publicly flout the law for the umteenth time? Under the name of “municipal government” they behave like a cowboy gang, treating the law as their play thing; only respecting it when it suits their purposes, and not afraid to break it when it does not.

This morning an official from the Municipality accompanied by an officer from the municipal police and the Police Nationale visited the residence. They received the evidence of the occupation that the inhabitants provided. However, in the early afternoon seven vans of CRS accompanied by many other police cars, marked and unmarked,came to evict!

Sealed registered letter posted to the 3 impasse Leclercq, Calais
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People tried to talk to the police reminding them of the illegality of theirs actions, and that a decision of the district court was necessary before an expulsion. However, the police ignored this and directly broke down the door without offering the occupants a way out. Residents and inhabitants tried to capture the actions of the police, but they grabbed the camera and threw them against the wall.

The occupants inside the building were also treated brutally, testimonies of which are being taken to make complaints against the police. Those inside were arrested, but released a few hours later without charge or even being interviewed, demonstrating once again that these expulsions are legally baseless! They seem to only have one goal: to empty the house of its inhabitants at all costs, regardless of the legality of their actions or the physical and psychological damage that this causes.

Three other occupied houses were also discovered by police during the day. Residents of these three places also provided evidence of their occupation for more than 48 hours to the media and the police. These homes do not belong to the city, but to other public institution who, for the moment, do not show the eagerness that Calais Ville does to illegally evict the inhabitants.

The complaint for illegal eviction from the house of 3 impasse Leclercq is under way, and all the original evidence was received by our lawyer and will be presented in court. We are ready to repeat this complaint for the other three places that have been opened, as long as our right to housing is not respected.

Communiqué from Calais

We are a group of people from different countries and different political backgrounds who are fighting for the right to housing for everyone, whatever their origin. We announce that we have been occupying (now for more than 48 hours), empty and abandoned public buildings in different parts of the town of Calais, and intend to continue these occupations and maintain them as “legal squats” for as long as possible:

Why here and why now?

There are more than 4,000 buildings empty in Calais, which represents 9 % of homes (500 of these are the property of a single, large, housing association- the major ‘social’ landlord in the city), and yet against this backdrop more than 500 people are on the streets, out of sight of any dignified solution and used only as sound bites by politicians who purport to offer assistance and in reality offering nothing. To address this situation they (the town hall/authorities) have turned Calais into a ghost town .

Who can claim to have walked in the streets of this city and not passed at least one house with bricked up windows, doors barricaded, the cellar sealed? Why leave places empty and people outside in the cold? Why spend money to condemn access to buildings rather than using them to help a precarious population?

To answer these questions that the public authorities have chosen to avoid, (for several years now) a group of individuals have set out to find collective solutions by giving life to abandoned buildings and the homeless a roof over their heads. Until now, the authorities have responded with repressive tactics that have resulted in multiple illegal evictions based on the perversion of legal procedures, manipulation of witnesses during neighbourhood investigations, and the alteration of evidence.

In Calais, the discourse on the right to housing is taken hostage by the various levels of power that have continued to use the migration situation to stir up fears and fantasies about the issue of squats. In recent months this political manipulations has been incarnated in the call for the denunciation and exposure of squats; spearheaded by UMP mayor of Calais Natacha Bouchart (who in reality has no real political prospects for this city) an attitude has bee established that suggests that squats and their alleged inhabitants are the origin of all the ills of the city. This poisonous atmosphere has allowed the racist/xenophobic collective “Save Calais” (whose founder is a neo-Nazi with a swastika tattoo) to germinate; their establishment occurring some what coincidentally just two days after Boucharts call for action on “the problem of migrant squats”.

Remember further that two of the town halls main representatives , Philippe Mignonnet and Emmanuel Agius (who both work under Bouchart) came out to welcome ‘save calais’ to the city and to support the groups “sit-in”on Thursday, Nov. 7 outside the town hall despite the fact that organizers and participants did not hide their racism (including for example some discriminatory remarks that migrants “are harmful, three quarters of them are potential aggressors) and displayed clear affiliation with the Front National.

“Save Calais” has since extended their ‘stigmatization of squats campaign’ with a sickening xenophobic discourse, and hardline violence against people trying to find shelter. This group has become the operational arm of the mayors call to denounce squats in Calais, and has set up a system for tracking migrants and others living in squats, to identify buildings being used for shelter, and to organize actions against these people and their homes. Where it was almost impossible before to stay in Calais when you were homeless (particularly homeless and undocumented) without becoming a victim of abuses by the authorities, it is now also a struggle to avoid being the victim of nazi attacks.

Fascist Extremists, members of “Save Calais”, and manipulated residents have effectively been besieging a small farmhouse on the outskirts of Calais ( which was squatted by a couple of people in need of a home) issuing death threats, throwing stones and Molotov cocktails, following and attempting to violently attack individuals going about their daily business, and consistently attempting to burn the house down- making life impossible for residence of the house attempting to carve out a semblance of a normal life. Today in Calais (and the surrounding area) being a squatter is taking the risk of being lynched , under the impassive eyes of police inaction and the defiant ignorance of the sub-prefect and prefect [1].

We can not let the arbitrary violence of a minority, hitherto unpunished, prevent us from having access to shelter and defending the need of decent housing for everyone regardless of their origins. We refuse the trivialization of these methods and the inaction of state officials, we will not sit back and do nothing, or see these events become an entrenched norm.

It would be great to have more people coming to Calais to help support and sustain our occupations, especially since we think the police are likely to try and ignore our strong evidence of legal rights as they have consistently done in the past.

Stop the rot, Squat the Lot.

[1] The roles of prefect and sub prefect are something similar to district judge, combined with the powers of a council official and the CPS (crown prosecution service) in that they can take decisions on police action; whether to intervene in certain political matters etc.