Tagged: brutality

Police brutality: daily life in Calais Jungle

Monday 31 August

Police brutalitysprayed man down

Late this evening over two hundred people ran out onto the motorway to create a blockade. Once traffic had been stopped, eight nearby police officers came onto the scene tear gassing people. As more people began to run in to block the motorway the police began to use their chemical spray more heavily. This created chaos, a dangerous situation as  the motorway is situated at the top of a steep slope. A police officer in confrontation with one man, made direct eye contact and sprayed him in the eyes from a distance of less than 50cm away. He fell to the ground instantly. People demanded an ambulance be called, but police refused to do anything. Bystanders helped the fallen man recover by blowing smoke into his eyes to allieviate the chemical sting. The police demanded no pictures be taken of the situation and threatened to use their pepper spray. The presence of white activists caused an obvious reduction in the physical aggression of the police. After 50 minutes, the fallen man began to regain consciousness and blink his eyes. The police tried to push people back at this stage, using pepper spray. This was extremely dangerous as the location on the cliff, with a 3m drop below. The spray forced the crowd down, but put everyone at risk of being trampled. A young boy of 12 nearly fell during the rush from this top. This recurring scene occured just a few hours after French prime minister Manuel Valls’ highly politicised visit to the Calais Jungle.

VIDEO of police violence in Calais just after Interior Minister Cazeneuve visit (4th May 2015)

These images were captured on the 5th of May 2015, beginning at 8 am and continuing throughout the day on the motorway branch leading to the ferry port of Calais (A216). These are just some examples of the everyday police brutality against people who attempt to cross the channel from Calais to the UK by hiding inside trucks. Calais Migrant Solidarity also intends to recall the difficult conditions faced when documenting police violence.

1 – at 0’12, Three members of the French riot police (CRS) force a person who was hidden in a truck to the other side of the motorway guardrail. At the end of the sequence (0’22) a second police officer discharges a burst of tear gas while the two persons were fleeing.

2 – at 0’28 “,A CRS officer removes a person from a truck and pushes him violently over the guardrail.

3 – at 0’42 “On the motorway junction A16) towards the Eurotunnel the police spray pepperspray from a van against a group of migrants. (a policecar slows down and discharges a burst of tear gas passing near agroup of migrants on the the other side of the guardrail to deter them from trying to cross.)

4 – at 0’51 “, One person is violently thrown over the guardrail by the police. After that a CRS officer assaults another person, kicking him to the ground. The person assaulted gets up and tries to run away but then receives kicks and punches and is pushed violently over the guardrail. At 1’09 (left of the image) a CRS officer uses pepper spray against people who are walking away.

5 – at 1’15 “, A CRS officer removes a person from a truck and violently pushes him over the guardrail.

6 -at 1’24 “, A CRS officer threatens a group of people by running towards them with a baton screaming, as it if he was playing with them.

7 – at 1’40 “A scene shot 22th of April 2015 near the junction of the A16 and Eurotunnel where police chase a member of a group who were documenting

police violence, they stop him, floor him and push his head into the ground with a knee.

8 – at 1’55 “: A CRS officer hits the guardrail with his baton, threatening a group of people.

Recall that in January the NGO Human Rights Watch published a report denouncing police violence, resulting in a condescending reaction dénégatrice the Ministry of the Interior (“the Government deployscomprehensive and appropriate responses.”).



More info:

(EN/FR) https://calaismigrantsolidarity.wordpress.com/

(FR) https://passeursdhospitalites.wordpress.com/

Police Violence

Attacks in Calais against migrants have increased massively in the past few months in both severity and frequency. We have seen many migrants beaten by police causing broken legs, arms and facial injuries. We have also heard many reports of police chasing migrants into busy motorways, which have been the cause of deaths over the last few months. Last week an Eritrean man was hit by a car whilst being chased by police, luckily he survived but others didn’t.

On Friday 19th December I was witnessed a similar attack by police forcing people to run in front of traffic. Several Eritrean men were sitting on a dividing barrier along the motorway near Leader Price waiting for truck traffic to back up on the road.

A Peugeot Police Nationale car with three officers inside pulled up on the other side of the road behind the sitting men. They opened the doors and sat with their legs out of the car, hands on batons ready to charge at the men sitting on the barrier. At that moment the road was clear, with a group of trucks approaching at about 50 – 60 mph. The police rushed at the men right before the truck was going to pass, running at them with their batons out and forcing the migrants to flee in front of the moving truck.

The truck driver repeatedly hit his horn but made no attempts to slow down, seemingly just annoyed by the migrants for ‘being in his way.’ The men narrowly passed before the truck with the last man less than half a meter from being run down.

After the attack I saw the three police laughing and mocking the migrants, clearly taking a lot of pleasure in causing pain and suffering.

It is obvious to me after witnessing this attack by the police that it was fully their intention to cause serious injury or death to the migrants. The police in Calais are actively creating situations in which deaths of migrants is a likely outcome.

Other witnesses have told of similar incidents, including in the death of an unknown man on 1st December 2014 and police pushing migrants into the cold winter water whilst beating them with batons.

Racism in the police is extremely apparent and the feeling of being untouchable seems to be increasing which in turns increases their confidence to attack migrants more and more brutally.

The police are currently operating without any fear of justice. They attacks are carried out away from the eyes of the local Calais population, against undocumented and unaccounted migrants. No Border activists have been making attempts to film police during attacks but so far have been arrested and had their cameras destroyed with high voltage electricity at the police station.

Les attaques contre les migrants à Calais ont augmenté massivement au cours des derniers mois à la fois en ce qui concerne gravité et la fréquence. Nous avons vu de nombreux migrants se faire battre par la police causant des fractures importantes au niveaux des bras et des jambes ainsi que des blessures au visage. Nous avons aussi beaucoup entendu parlé de la police chassant migrants, les forçant à s’échapper en traversant l’autoroute. Ce type d’attaque a été la cause de décès au cours des derniers mois. La semaine dernière, un homme a été érythréen heurté par une voiture tout en étant pourchassé par la police, il a heureusement survécu, mais d’autres ne ont pas eu cette chance.

Le vendredi 19 Décembre j’ai été témoin d’une attaque similaire par la police forçant les gens à courir devant dans le trafic. Plusieurs hommes érythréens étaient assis sur une barrière de séparation le long de l’autoroute près de Leader Price attentant d’avoir la voie libre pour traverser sans danger. Une voiture Peugeot Police Nationale avec trois officiers se sont arrêtés tous près des hommes Erythréen assis de l’autre côté de la route. Ils ont ouvert les portes et se sont assis avec les jambes hors de la voiture, les mains sur matraques, prêt à charger les hommes assis sur la barrière. A ce moment, la route était clair, suivi par un un groupe de camions approchant à environ 50 à 60 mph. La police à chargé sur les hommes juste avant que le camion passe, courant leur matraques à la main et forçant les migrants à fuir devant le camion roulant à toute allure.

Le conducteur du camion a frappé à plusieurs reprises son klaxon, mais n’a fait aucune tentative pour ralentir, apparemment juste agacé par les migrants «d’être sur son chemin». Les hommes ont passé de justesse avant que le camion passe. Le dernier homme à passé à moins d’un demi-mètre de se faire écraser.

Après l’attaque, je ai vu les trois policiers en riant et se moquant des migrants, en prenant manifestement beaucoup de plaisir à causer de la douleur et de la souffrance.

Il est évident pour moi après avoir assisté à cette attaque de la par de la police qu’il était pleinement leur intention de causer des blessures graves ou même la mort des migrants. La police à Calais créent activement des situations dans lesquelles la mort des migrants est un résultat probable.

D’autres témoins ont partagé que des incidents similaires, y compris la mort d’un homme inconnu le 1er Décembre 2014 et la police poussant migrants dans l’eau froide d’hiver tout en les frappant avec des matraques.

Le racisme dans la police est extrêmement apparent et le sentiment d’être intouchable semble être en augmentation qui à son tour augmente leur confiance pour attaquer les migrants de plus en plus brutalement.

Les policiers agissent actuellement sans aucune crainte de la justice. Leurs attaques sont menées loin des yeux de la population locale Calais, contre les migrants sans papiers et portées disparues. Des militants No Border ont fait des tentatives pour filmer la police au cours d’attaques mais jusqu’ici ils ont été arrêtés et leurs caméras a été détruites avec l’électricité à haute tension aux poste de police.

The 11 persons from Sudan, that had been arrested on the 28th of november were released yesterday morning!

The 11 persons that had been arrested on the 28th of november were released yesterday morning!
Small overview of what happened in the meantime:

After their tough arrestation in Calais in front of the sudanese jungle, where they had not even been given the chance to get their papers from their tents (some of them had for example proof that they were about to ask asylum in France) the arrested people were first brought to the detention center in Coquelles and then send to the detention center in Roissy close to Paris. They arrived in Roissy after 22 hours. Until their arrival there, during these 22 HOURS, THEY WERE NOT GIVEN WATER NOR MEDICATION INDESPENSABLE TO LIFE !! Another example that not even a tiny minimum of rights is respected in Calais.
In the afternoon five of them were convocated, but send back to the detention center basically without a decision being made. They were released on monday after the maximum amount of 5 days of detention possible without prolongation ( neither the prefect had asked nor the judge had decided on an extension)
During the courtcase of the six other persons, the maximum amount of 5 days of detention ( the prefect had not asked for an extension in their case either) had passed and technically all of them were already free before the judge took her decision. This was respected by the court and people decided by themselves whether they wanted to wait for the decision or leave. The judge repealed the request to leave french territory done by the prefecture.

The arrested persons were really disgusted about the brutality and unjustifiedness of their arrestment and the fact that they were brought away so far from Calais!! They felt treated like criminals and very threatened of being deported! This tactic of creating fear and sending people to prisons in other cities in order to get rid off them is not new at all, but shocks and scares everytime anew.



Les 11 personnes originaires du Soudan, qui avaient été arrêtées le 28 novembre ont été relâchées hier matin !

petit aperçu de ce qui s’est passé entre-temps :

après leur violente arrestation à calais en face de la jungle soudanaise, où on ne leur a même pas laisser la possibilité de prendre leurs papiers qui étaient dans leurs tentes (certains d’entre eux possédaient par exemple la preuve qu’ils étaient sur le point de demander l’asile en France), les personnes arrêtées ont été d’abord conduites dans le centre de détention de Coquelles et ensuite dans celui de Roissy, à côté de Paris. Elles sont arrivées à Roissy 22 heures après leur arrestation. Jusqu’à leur arrivée là-bas, pendant ces 22 heures ON NE LEUR DONNE A BOIRE NI LES MEDICAMENTS INDISPENSABLES A LEUR SURVIE !! un autre exemple que même un minimum de droits n’est pas respecté à Calais.

Lundi :
dans l’après-midi cinq d’entre eux été convoqués, mais renvoyés en centre de détention, en fait sans qu’aucune décision ne soit prise. Ils ont été relâchés lundi après le temps de détention maximum sans prolongation, soit cinq jours (ni le préfet ni le juge n’ont demandé une prolongation)

Mardi :
pendant le jugement de 6 autres personnes, le temps de détention maximum de cinq jours (le préfet n’avait pas non plus demandé de prolongation) s’était déjà écoulé et techniquement ils étaient tous libres avant même que le juge ne prenne sa décision. cela a été respecté par le tribunal et les personnes ont décidées elles-mêmes si elles voulaient attendre la décision ou partir. le juge a répété la demande faite par la préfecture de quitter le territoire français.

Les personnes arrêtées étaient déjà dégoutées par la brutalité et le caractère injustifié de leur arrestation et le fait qu’elles avaient été emmenées loin de Calais ! Elles se sentaient traitées comme des criminels et très menacées d’être déportées ! Cette tactique de créer la peur et d’envoyer les personnes en prison dans d’autres villes pour se débarrasser d’elles n’est pas nouvelle. mais elles choque et effraye a chaque fois que quelqu’un doit la vivre.