On Monday 22nd February at 13:30 8 people will stand in court in Boulogne-Sur-Mer facing trial for occupying the ‘Spirit of Britain’ ferry on Saturday 23rd of January. Six of the defendants are people without papers from Afghanistan, Sudan and Syria, all currently living in the jungle. They are charged for ‘breaching the transport code’, which in this instance involves entering and occupying a ferry without authorisation. Standing on trial alongside these six will be two French people with papers. They face the same charges for breaching the transport code, as well as a further charge of facilitating entry to the port and ferry. The maximum sentence for these offences is up to 6 months in prison or a €3,500 fine per person.
The two people with papers have been released on bail whist awaiting trial. The six without papers were held in detention and have since been sent to Longeunesse prison in Saint-Omer. Regardless of the outcome of the trial, the future for the people without papers is not clear. We do not know if they will be released free or if they will be sent to a detention centre, possibly resulting in them being deported back to the war torn countries that they are fleeing from.
This is a call out inviting people to come and show support to those facing trial. We ask for people to come and stand with us in solidarity with those facing oppression and sanctions as a result of resisting the border. We are in the process of organising transport for those without papers in the jungle who wish to be present at the trial, and encourage anyone else who has access to a vehicle to offer the same.
The French government wishes to make an example of these 8 people – fight the border and pay the price. We wish to make a stand against this. We will always be against the border. We will always fight for the right to freedom of movement. Come to the court at Place de la Résistance in Boulogne and stand with us, and with our friends facing trial.
For the last three days, the police have been restricting car or vehicle access to the jungle, to just those who belong to ‘recognised associations’ that are known to work in Calais. There are only two ways to drive to the jungle, and the police have made check points at these entrances, and access is only available for vehicles carrying an association card.
This started on Sunday, when the jungle is normally full of people making distributions over the weekend. Barely any distributions were able to take place. Locals, from Calais and the surrounding area were also not able inside to visit friends.
In the media the police are saying they are just trying to control the flow of traffic, but this is bullshit. The motivation for this is simple, the police are trying to isolate the jungle, cracking down on humanitarian aid and the unprecedented solidarity movement that has grown around the situation in Calais.
General police presence around the jungle is also increasing everyday. Now the foot patrols the police make through the jungle are lasting for longer and longer. There are often police cars parked along the street that runs up to Jules Ferry, outside pedestrian access to the camp. Also where people go to use the internet.
The police operation of mass arrests and dispersals from the Channel Tunnel and the port is also continuing. We have also been hearing of massive ID controls happening in the centre, at the moment we don’t know if people arrested in these controls are also being subjected to dispersal to other CRA (detention centres). 50 people are being transferred from Calais everyday to detention centres across France, and it is set to continue like this for a while.
Pendant ces trois derniers jours, la police a restreint les accès à la Jungle pour les voitures ou autres véhicules, uniquement à ceux qui appartiennent aux “associations reconnues” pour leur travail à Calais. Seuls deux voies existent pour conduire jusqu’à la Jungle et la police font des checks-points sur ces entrées,où l’accès est reservé aux véhicules ayant une carte associative.
Ceci a commencé dimanche lorsque la Jungle est normalement pleine de personnes faisant des distributions tout le week-end. Quelques distributions ont pu difficilement avoir lieu. Les habitants, de Calais et des alentours, ne pouvaient pas rendre visite à leur amis non plus.
Dans les médias, la police affirme qu’ils essaient juste de contrôler le trafic, mais ça c’est de la merde.
Leur motivation à faire ça est simple : ils essaient juste d’isoler la jungle, de sévir contre l’aide humanitaire et le mouvement de solidarité sans précédent qui s’est formé autour de la situation à Calais.
La présence de la police en général et autour de la Jungle augmente tous les jours. Maintenant, les patrouilles à pied à travers la jungle durent de plus en plus longtemps. Il y a souvent des voitures de police garées le long de la rue menant à Jules Ferry, l’accès piéton extérieur à la jungle. Ainsi qu’à l’endroit où les gens vont pour avoir internet.
Les opérations de police d’arrestations massives et de dispersion au Tunnel sous la Manche et au port continuent également. Nous avons aussi entendu parler de contrôles d’identité en masse ayant eu lieu en centre-ville. Pour l’instant nous ne savons pas encore si les gens arrêtés lors de ces contrôles sont également concernés par leur dispersion dans d’autres CRA (Centre de Rétention Administratif). 50 personnes sont ainsi transférées de Calais chaque jour vers des centres de rétention à travers la France et ce n’est pas prêt de s’arrêter pour le moment.
Around 50 people were arrested in the Channel Tunnel on Tuesday night, mostly from Syria. Today they were transferred to a detention centre in Nimes.Tomorrow, people are expected to be taken to Toulouse. The next day Paris. They are targetting people from all communities, Sudan, Eritrean, Syrian, Iraqi…It is likely that they plan to carry on making mass arrests in the Channel Tunnel.
This news comes from the association La Cimade, who work in detention centres in different places across France. The full announcement can be read here in French. They say this is the beginning of a massive police operation in Calais. Most of these arrests will not lead to deportation, but they will lead to a massive and repeated dispersement of people across France. People will have to make a long journey back to Calais to try again.
When inside the detention centres, people are receiving threats of deportation and face serious violence from the police trying to make them give their fingerprints in France.
For the last 4 weeks police have made patrols of the jungle (normally mostly around the area that has just been announced for the place of the new camp), and they have always been present around the Jules Ferry Centre. Yesterday there was a higher police presence around the jungle than usual. For many, it seems like they are stepping up intimidation to make sure that the people who need to move will do so without resistance. And as ever, there is pressure to give up on their journey to the UK and make their asylum claim in France.
This all comes the day after Cazneuve promised 460 more police for Calais.
Une cinquantaine de personnes ont été arrêtées dans l’Eurotunnel dans la nuit de mardi; la plupart originaires de Syrie. Aujourd’hui (22 octobre) elles ont été transférées au centre de rétention de Nîmes. Demain, elles seront normalement transférées à Toulouse. Le jour suivant à Paris. L’état cible des personnes de toutes les communautés. Soudanaises, Erythréennes, Syriennes, Iraqiennes… Les forces de l’ordre semblent poursuivre dans leur volonté d’effectuer des arrestations massives dans l’Eurotunnel.
Cette nouvelle vient de l’association “La Cimade”, qui travaille dans de nombreux centre de rétention en France. Cette annonce peut être lue dans son intégralité ici (here), en français. Pour la Cimade, ces arrestations annoncent le début d’une grande opération policière à Calais. La plupart de ces arrestations ne se solderont pas par des déportations, mais elles s’inscrivent dans une volonté de disperser les personnes présentes à Calais sur tout le territoire français. Ces personnes devront alors traverser la France à nouveau pour revenir à Calais et essayer, encore une fois, de passer en Angleterre
Lorsqu’elles sont à l’intérieur des centres de rétention, ces personnes doivent faire face à des menaces de déportation, d’expulsion, et sont confrontées à de sérieuses violences de la part des policiers qui veulent qu’elles déposent leurs empreintes.
Il y avait une bien plus forte présence policière autour de la jungle ces derniers jours. Depuis deux semaines, la police effectue des patrouilles dans la jungle (très souvent autour de la zone récemment annoncée pour accueillir le futur centre de 1500 places) . La police est aussi très souvent présente autour du centre Jules Ferry, et aujourd’hui, toute la journée, elle était installée dans de nombreux points tout autour de la jungle.
Pour beaucoup, cette volonté croissante d’intimider les personnes vivant dans la jungle a pour but de faciliter le déplacement de ces dernières au moment voulu sans qu’il n’y est de résistance, mais aussi de faire renoncer ces personnes dans leurs tentatives de passage et les pousser à demander l’asile en France.
Hunger strikes and occupations have been happening in 7 of UK’s detention centres for a week now. Hundreds of people have been refusing food and protesting in the centres.
People are speaking out about the situation through the blog below
People are now asking for actions of solidarity from outside the UK- at Embassies, detention centres etc. Protests at UK Embassies, especially if shown in non-UK media would make it harder for the UK news embargo to continue, and put increasing pressure. Massive solidarity and support to those demonstrating at the moment. Tear down the fences, tear down the walls!
THERE IS NO FREEDOM UNTIL THERE IS FREEDOM FOR ALL!
Todays court case concerning eight person’s detention and deportation to Sudan, the tribunal in Lille decided to stop the procedures of deportation. Later in the afternoon all eight people from the court case were released.
We are of course happy for our friends to be out of prison and without threat of deportation – but we also wish for all other prisoners to be free. Even if these people got released after four days, there are still a lot of people in the detention centre in Coquelle as a consequence of the border regime.
During the court case, both the translation and the information about the right to solicitor to the people threatened with deportation were terrible and confusing as they were not aware of what was being said, and who is their solicitor. At the same time cops from Police Aux Frontier were walking around making jokes and talking about what they were going to have for lunch.
Strength to everybody locked up as a consequence of the border regime – free all prisoners!
Lundi soir, une quinzaine d’exilés soudanais ont été arrêtés entre le squat Galou et le campement du fort Nieulay. Une partie d’entre eux ont été relâchés dans la nuit, mais huit ont été placés en rétention au CRA (Centre de rétention administrative) de Coquelles, à côté de Calais, avec une décision d’expulsion vers le Soudan.
Ils passeront demain matin à 8h au tribunal administratif de Lille, qui se prononcera sur leur recours contre leur placement en rétention et leur expulsion. La présence de soutiens est souhaitée (Tribunal Administratif, 143 Rue Jacquemars Giélée, 59800 Lille https://goo.gl/maps/STR2Q).
Prenez contact avec Préfet du Pas-de-Calais, Denis Robin, pour exiger l’arrêt des procédures d’expulsion vers Soudan.
par téléphone : 03.21.21.20.00
par fax : 03.21.55.30.30
sur le formulaire de la préfecture : http://www.pas-de-calais.gouv.fr/Contactez-nous
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NEW THREATH: RISK OF EVICTION TO SUDAN
Monday night, fifteen Sudanese exiles were arrested between the squat Galou and the camp of Fort Nieulay. Some of them were released in the night, but eight were detained at the ARC (Administrative Detention Centre) in Coquelles, near Calais, with an expulsion order to Sudan.
Tomorrow morning at 8 am they have their courtcase at the Lille administrative court, which will decide on their appeal against their detention and deportation. The presence of support is desired (Administrative Court, 143 Rue Jacquemars Giélée, 59800 Lille https://goo.gl/maps/STR2Q).
Get in contact with Prefect of Pas-de-Calais, Denis Robin, to demand no deportations to Sudan:
on the form of the Prefecture: http://www.pas-de-calais.gouv.fr/Contactez-nous
Winter has arrived with storms and rains. The big jungles and Galloo squat are still there; Tioxide-jungle with 2 restaurants, school, church, mosque and a shop. (see below news about forthcoming evictions). There are around 2000 people living rough in these spaces. The cold weather shelter is open occasionally with 350 sleeping spaces: it’s located far from the city and even when open it is not easily accessible due to the short opening hours.
December saw a high level of police violence concentrated on truck parkings and traffic jams leading to the Euro Tunnel and port. Attacks were sporadic and beatings seemingly random, aimed at discouraging migrants form trying for England and plainly expressing police racism. Police chased people into oncoming traffic, broke many limbs, and regularly used pepper spray at point blank range. They destroyed cameras when people attempted to film these illegal acts of violence.
When arrested from the streets near the jungles people were often taken to far away detention centers, such as Rennes, Metz, Nimes, Strasbourg and Paris. Some were even transported by plane to distant detention centers via a small airport in Calais.
The border entails various forms of violence. Migration controls violates women’s rights through racism and sexism in a way that these two systems of oppression are very much interlinked.
The hospital of Calais refuses to carry out abortions for migrants with an extremly cowardly explanation. The authorities based their decision on law that says that you cannot travel to France to have an abortion there, obviously that is not the case of the women at all. They systematically send women that could not proove an official residence in France to the hospital of Grande Synthe, that is 50 kilometers away. They claim that this is because they are concerned about the womens security, since abortion is supposed to be a specific medical intervention (although it is an intervention like any other with very low risks) they say it is to dangerous for the women to go back to the jungle afterwards. So yeah, they think staying pregnant against their own will is healthier and safer for the women.
After complaints having been made, the hospital should be called out by the ministry of health, since this racist, selective practice of carrying out basic health services is completely illegal!
However, not all was bleak. There were a few festive moments, namely a demo on the International Migrants’ day on the 18th, a couple of small Christmas parties in the jungles and a big New Years party at the Galloo Squat. The demo was organized by various associations as a response to the ‘Wall of Shame’, a large security fence recently installed by the UK government to increase security in the Ferry Port and previously used for the NATO summit in Cardiff. It was well-attended with over 1000 people. All of the parties were a great success with no violent police interventions or other incidents – just wild dancing to a very mixed play list and general merriment.
Next week on wednesday at 2pm (Centre Social Espace Fort Yves
2 B Rue D Ajaccio) self defense classes for women, trans* and queers will start ! These classes will hopefully take place regularly on a longterm basis- we are still looking for teachers that are happy to come around and hold one or several classes!
What to expect for January ?
An eviction notice, without a specific date being set has been placed in front of the sudanese jungle and the Bois Dubrulle (forest on the opposite side of Tioxide mainly inhabited by the afghan and ethiopian comunity) by the CRS. Several asylum seekers living in the spaces being threatened are ready to challenge the decision in court.
The last official announcements made by the prefecture claimed that there would be no forced evictions of any living spaces until the new day center opens. So when does it open? Food is supposed to be served there starting from mid-january and the original opening date of the center was set for the end of the month. But it seems like there are some additional works inside the building that take up more time than foreseen, so we don’t reall know at what point they actually wanna get going. Anyways we aren’t waiting for it with high expectations. The day center is part of a wider anti-migration strategy and comes along with other agreements between Natacha Bouchart and Cazeneuve with the UK (more policemen in Calais, closing-off of the port with the fence all around). Starting from the moment the daycenter opens, all other squats and jungles etc. are supposed to disappear and a ‘zero tolerance politic’ towards them has been announced. All services for migrants are supposed to be centralised in this space far from the city center, in order to concentrate the migrants outside of Calais. There will be no sleeping places for men, camping will be tolerated on the fields around. The outcome will be an even more official segregation between the habitants of the city and the migrants being locked out in the middle of nowhere.