Demolition of Calais ‘Jungle’ camp under way

Boarding busses in Calais
Boarding busses in Calais

The dismantling of the “Jungle” migrant camp in Calais has began as its inhabitants leave by bus for other parts of France.

A group of workers started to demolish unoccupied tents and shacks by hand, according to reporters at the scene.

About 2,000 migrants left voluntarily on Monday, and hundreds more have followed in the days following.

The Jungle has become a key symbol of Europe’s migration crisis, housing some 7,000 residents in squalid conditions.

calais-migrant-camp-the-jungleThe operation to close the camp has been largely peaceful, but concerns remain that some migrants will refuse to give up their attempts to cross the Channel to the UK.

The French authorities said they were prioritizing departures on Tuesday morning, but crews in hard hats and orange jumpsuits started demolition shortly after 1500 local time.
Crews began to pull down wooden frames and tarpaulins
Crews began to pull down wooden frames and tarpaulins

They tore down wooden shacks with sledgehammers and used diggers to move away debris.

The demolition is expected to be done mostly by hand – and in a low-key manner – as officials believe sending in bulldozers at this point would send the wrong message to migrants they want to convince to get on buses voluntarily.

The Calais police commissioner says the camp will be fully cleared by Friday and that only about 200 people are expected to try to stay.

There are warnings that those determined to stay will set up camp in the surrounding countryside while the demolition takes place before returning to the area.

Children are the only group allowed to stay in Calais. They will be housed in the camp’s converted shipping containers while the rest of the Jungle is dismantled.

Almost 200 children from the camp have been brought to the UK, some of them under the “Dubs” amendment to the Immigration Act, according to UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

The amendment allows particularly vulnerable children – such as girls and those under 13 – refuge in the UK, even if they do not have family already in the country.

Dismantling the Jungle

At times the migrants have jostled with police as they wait to board buses.
At times the migrants have jostled with police as they wait to board buses.

than 1,200 police were deployed for the clearance operation.

The French interior ministry said officers “might be forced to intervene” if there was unrest during the demolition.

In a statement (in French), French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said 2,318 migrants had been “given shelter” on Monday.

A total of 1,918 adults had been taken away on 45 buses to 80 reception centers, while 400 minors were transferred to “provisional reception centers” within the camp.

The first day had taken place in a “calm and controlled manner”, he said.

Once the migrants have been transferred to different parts of France, they will be given the opportunity to claim asylum, or face deportation.

where-asylum-applications-have-been-made-in-2016Last year more than one million migrants – many fleeing the civil war in Syria – arrived in Europe. Countries struggled to cope and division arose in the EU over how best to deal with resettling people.

An EU-Turkey pact to try to stop migrants crossing to Greece and moves by Balkan nations to close their borders have driven down the number of people using the so-called eastern Mediterranean route.

However, migrants from African countries such as Eritrea and Somalia as well as West African nations such as Nigeria and the Gambia are continuing to attempt the crossing from Libya to Italy.

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Notorious refugee camp in France to be dismantled starting next week

The Calais Jungle
The Calais Jungle

The French Interior Ministry announced Friday that the Calais Jungle, the overcrowded and notorious refugee camp in Northern France, will be dismantled. There are 6,486 refugees currently in the Calais Jungle who will be moved to other camps throughout the country. “It is an operation that carries a risk,” said a French official in regards to the plan.

The official added that the evacuation plan will begin on Monday and is expected to last about a week. In the camp, there are refugees from all over the world, including Syria, Afghanistan and Eritrea, who are requesting to enter Britain.

Migrant camp in Calais
Migrant camp in Calais

Britain usually rejects their asylum request in accordance with the EU law that states that refugees need to ask for asylum from the first country they enter. Last month, French President Francois Hollande announced the plans to close the camp. He described the situation in the camp as “unacceptable.” This week, a French court dismissed the petition to delay the evacuation until alternative housing for the refugees was found. The petition was submitted by various human rights organizations.

The refugees living in the Calais Jungle will be divided by families into several groups. The groups will then be divided among hundreds of refugee facilities in France where they will undergo medical tests and file an asylum request if they wish. 1,250 police officers and security personnel will oversee this operation, making sure that it goes smoothly.

Mexican officials quietly helping thousands of Haitian illegal immigrants reach U.S.

Mexican officials are quietly helping thousands of Haitians make their way to the United States illegally, according to an internal Homeland Security document that details the route taken by the migrants, the thousands of dollars paid to human smugglers along the way and the sometimes complicit role of the neighboring governments of the U.S.
Haitian illegal immigrants
Haitian illegal immigrants
Rep. Duncan Hunter
Rep. Duncan Hunter

More than 6,000 Haitians arrived at the border in San Diego over the past year — a staggering eighteenfold increase over fiscal year 2015. Some 2,600 more were waiting in northern Mexico as of last week, and 3,500 others were not far behind, waiting in Panama to make the trip north, according to the documents, obtained by Rep. Duncan Hunter, California Republican.

The migrants are paying at least $2,350 to be smuggled from South America to the doorstep of the U.S., where many present themselves at the border and many demand asylum in an attempt to gain a foothold.

“Haitians have forged a dangerous and clandestine new path to get to the United States,” says the document, which lays out in detail the route and the prices paid along the way for smugglers, bus tickets and, where they can be obtained legally, transit documents.

Their trek begins in Brazil and traces a 7,100-mile route up the west coast of South America and Central America, crossing 11 countries and taking as long as four months.

Some countries are more welcoming than others, according to the document, which was reviewed by The Washington Times. Nicaragua is listed as being particularly vigilant about deporting the Haitian migrants if they are caught, so smugglers there charge $1,000.

While traveling through Central American countries, the Haitians will claim to be from Congo. They believe authorities in Central America aren’t likely to go through the hassle of deporting them to West Africa if they are caught, the Homeland Security Department said.

Smugglers charge $200 through Ecuador and $300 each through Guatemala and Colombia, the document says.

Mexico, though, is more accommodating to the migrants. It stops them at its southern border in Tapachula, processes them and — though they don’t have legal entry papers — “they receive a 20-day transit document” giving them enough time to get a bus across Mexico, arriving eventually in Tijuana, just south of San Diego.

Once in the United States, many of the Haitians claim asylum and fight deportation in cases that can drag on for years, guaranteeing the migrants a foothold in the country. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said it received referrals to conduct credible fear screenings, the first part of an affirmative asylum claim, for 523 Haitians over the past year.

Other Haitians who are apprehended are put on a slow deportation track, giving them a chance to hide in the shadows along with other illegal immigrants. Southern Florida is a particularly attractive destination for Haitians, the document said.

Haitians are the latest nationality to surge into the United States, along with Central Americans enticed by the belief that lax enforcement policies under President Obama will enable them to stay, even if it means living in the shadows.

“The exponential increase in Haitian migrants showing up at the southern border is truly astonishing, and it shows one of the many consequences of President Obama’s immigration policy, which invites illegal entry and exploitation of the system,” said Joe Kasper, chief of staff for Mr. Hunter.

He said he was struck by Mexico’s “complicity” by granting Haitians just enough legal passage to reach the United States.

Mexico doesn’t want them, but it’s entirely content with putting migrants — in this case Haitians — right on America’s doorstep,” he said.

As many as 75,000 Haitians fled to Brazil after the 2010 earthquake. About 50,000 remain, but the rest have left. During the past year, a steady stream has headed for the United States.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the agency that guards the borders and ports of entry, acknowledged “an uptick” in Haitians arriving without permission.

In fact, the numbers rose from 339 in fiscal year 2015 to 6,121 in 2016 — an increase of more than 1,800 percent.

“While CBP officials have made adjustments to port operations to accommodate this uptick in arriving individuals, CBP officials are used to dynamic changes at our local border crossings, including San Ysidro, the nation’s busiest border crossing, and are able to flex resources to accommodate those changes,” the agency said in a statement.

CBP says it processed the Haitians “on a case-by-case basis” and those that don’t have permission to be in the U.S. are sent to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the deportation agency.

As of Sept. 24, ICE had 619 Haitians in detention.

ICE had been moving slowly on deportations of Haitians under a humanitarian policy in place since the 2010 earthquake. But on Sept. 21, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced that agents would resume rapid deportations of Haitians caught at the border.

 

German Government is Watching ‘Far Right’ Citizens, Not Islamic Invaders!

Members of the Identitarian Movement climbed the historic 18th-century Brandenburg Gate to drop a large banner stating “secure borders – secure future” in protest against Germany’s open border policy. They are identified as “a far-right group opposed to immigration in Germany,” and “anti-Immigrant.”
Brandenburg Gate banner stating 'secure borders – secure future'
Brandenburg Gate banner stating ‘secure borders – secure future’

However, the group is not against immigrants, it’s against the “Islamization of the West” including German society.

The Identitarian Movement demonstrates in Dresden.
The Identitarian Movement demonstrates in Dresden.

The Identitarian Movement Group posted on Facebook that Europe should be a fortress to fight against “uncontrolled mass migration” to Germany. They assert:

“We send a signal to the Identitarian youth of Europe: Defend yourselves against the rampant immigration in your countries and against the Islamization moving more and more [sic].”

Now, however, the Local reports that the main German federal intelligence agency is watching this “far-right group” viewing them as having “an extreme stance against foreign nationals.”

Hans-Georg Maaßen
Hans-Georg Maaßen

Hans-Georg Maaßen, head of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution – Germany’s domestic security agency, isn’t addressing Germany’s migrant rapists rampaging throughout Germany. Instead he says,

“We are seeing in the Identitarian Movement indications of efforts to undercut the democratic order. Immigrants with Muslim backgrounds or people from the Middle East are being slandered by them in the most extreme fashion. Therefore we are also surveilling this movement.”

The Local adds, “state level spy agencies are already surveilling the organization in nine states including Berlin and North Rhine-Westphalia.”

Where is the surveillance of migrant Muslim men attacking German women and children?

Berlin's Mayor Michael Muller
Berlin’s Mayor Michael Muller

Berlin’s Mayor Michael Muller said their protest was “disgusting,” that they are “enemies of democracy,” and that “Berliners will not allow the Brandenburg Gate [to be] misused as a symbol of exclusion.”

What is wrong with German leaders? And why are they not listening to or protecting their own people?

Europe Makes Deal to Send Afghans Home, Where War Awaits Them

afghan-and-european-union-flagsThe European Union and Afghanistan announced a deal on Wednesday that would send tens of thousands of Afghan migrants who had reached Europe back home to an increasingly hazardous war zone.

The agreement is the most specific effort yet by Europe to divert or reverse a wave of hundreds of thousands of migrants from war-torn countries including Afghanistan and Syria. But unlike a major agreement with Turkey this year to have that country host more Syrian refugees, the new deal as worded would forcibly send Afghans whose asylum applications were rejected directly back to an intensifying war that has taken a severe toll on civilian life — seemingly at odds with international conventions on refugees.

An Afghan family at a refugee camp last year on the island of Lesbos.
An Afghan family at a refugee camp last year on the island of Lesbos.

“The E.U. and the government of Afghanistan intend to cooperate closely in order to organize the dignified, safe and orderly return of Afghan nationals to Afghanistan who do not fulfill the conditions to stay in the E.U.,” the agreement read.

The repatriation deal was announced alongside an international conference in which governments pledged $3.75 billion in annual development aid to Afghanistan over the next four years.

Taliban fighters on Wednesday attacked Afghan security forces who were fighting for a third day to maintain control of the main government buildings in Kunduz, a vital provincial capital that briefly fell to insurgents last year. In the Afghan south, another of the few remaining government-held districts in Helmand Province has been seized by the insurgents last week. At no time since before the 2001 American invasion of Afghanistan have the Taliban controlled more territory in the country.

In 2015 alone, 213,000 Afghans arrived in Europe, with 176,900 claiming asylum that year, according to European Union data. Fifty to 60 percent of such Afghan requests have been denied so far, meaning that tens of thousands of people could be returned to Afghanistan under the deal.

European officials denied that the repatriation deal was a condition for aid to Afghanistan.

In addition to the fact that even Afghan districts and major highways once declared safe are now threatened or overrun by the Taliban, the returnees from Europe will go back to a dire economic crisis, with an unemployment rate of about 35 percent and about 400,000 young people entering the job market every year.

Far-right party handed out ‘anti-migrant’ spray in Denmark, spurring backlash

denmark-map-2A provocative stunt by a far-right Danish political party  has stirred a growing international backlash.

Members of the Party of the Danes in the port town of Haderslev distributed dozens of aerosol spray cans to passersby. They were labeled “anti-migrant spray,” aimed at equipping local Danes against the threat of assault from immigrants and asylum seekers.

asyl-sprayThe purse-size can came with a label that translates as “Refugee Spray,” both “legal” and “effective.” The move immediately drew critics.

Izza Leghtas, a senior advocate for Europe at Refugees International, described the gag to CNN as “an appalling act of hostility and xenophobia towards asylum-seekers and refugees.” She went on: “People who have fled to Europe to escape from war and violence should find the protection they need, and be treated with respect like any other human being. Yet too often, they find closed doors and prejudice. This is the latest, extreme example of that.”

The Party of the Danes defended its stunt in Haderslev. “I cannot see how it is racist,” party leader Daniel Carlsen told CNN. “Pepper spray is illegal here so we wanted to figure out a way for Danish people, in particular women, to protect themselves. It’s obviously not the ideal situation.”

While the party is relatively fringe and linked with neo-Nazism, its fellow travelers include more prominent, legitimate organizations, such as the Danish People’s Party. From obscurity in the 1990s, the xenophobic DPP has risen to command a significant chunk of seats in Denmark’s Parliament, winning some 21 percent of the vote in elections last year. Denmark’s coalition government has been accused of taking a hard line on migrants, and was widely criticized for a plan to seize the assets and valuables of incoming refugees.

Like the attitudes of far-right populists elsewhere, security fears in Denmark about an influx of migrants are often built on a more abhorrent reservoir of racial hostility.

Migrant In Court For Violent Rape: ‘I Came to Austria to F*** the Women’

austria-map-3On trial at the Regional Court of Linz the Algerian, who has been convicted several times in France and Austria, denied carrying out the attack in April this year. He is alleged to have tried to rape the victim before brutally beating her.

The woman was left lying unconscious with serious injuries in bushes near the bus stop where the incident occurred. She is also thought to have been psychologically scarred by the event.

Asked why he’d come to Austria the accused replied: “I have come to Austria to f*** the women”. As well as having several convictions in Europe, the Algerian has a rejected asylum decision and a travel ban under his belt. The 35 year old is also accused of committing an attempted rape last November, and of an assault.

Deportation has not so far been possible as Austria has no arrangements with Algeria.

Testifying, a student who was approached by the victim told the court: “The woman came up to me and was covered in blood. You could not see her face. She said to me: ‘I was raped.’”

Bavaria Complains As Austrians Shuttle Migrants To Border Region
Bavaria Complains As Austrians Shuttle Migrants To Border Region

After hearing this testimony, presiding judge Ursula Eichler asked the accused whether he would like to add something to his statement, since the statements of the victim, the witnesses, and DNA evidence would weigh heavily on his case.

Through his interpreter, the accused responded: “I’ve never seen this woman in my life.”

He then repeated, several times, “I swear by Allah that I did not rape that woman.”

Wochenblick reported that the victim was traumatised and still had serious injuries to the left side of her face as a result of the attack. Crying, she left the courtroom with relatives after the video of her testimony was played.

Following the brutal attack in April she has undergone nine different types of medical treatment in psychotherapeutic care, and is having to take strong anxiety and insomnia medications.

The hearing was postponed so that a psychiatric evaluation of the accused and a health report of the victim can be undertaken. If convicted, the defendant will be sentenced to up to ten years in jail.