France, Calais: state announces official jungle eviction plan, starting on 23rd [ENG]

Via Calais Migrant Solidarity

On 20 October the prefecture [local representative of the French government] held a meeting with the associations [charities] about the planned “Reception and Orientation Centres” (CAOs). We now know how the prefecture will organise the eviction.

The eviction will start on Monday, 24th of October, when the first buses will arrive to take people to the CAO centres. Destruction will start on Tuesday the 25th.

It is confirmed that there will be a “Sorting Centre” on Rue des Garennes, just a couple of hundred metres away from the main entrance to the jungle. People will pass through the sorting center before being divided onto buses going to CAOs all around the country. All people still in the area who refuse to go to CAOs, will be sent to detention centers. New detention centers have been created for the eviction, some others have been emptied to hold people arriving from Calais. Marck airport may also be used to send people to detention centers.

The sorting center will be open from 8 am to 8 pm. It is already kept under surveillance by the police. People will be separated into different queues indicated by pictograms : single men, families, minors and « vulnerable people ».

Everybody except the minors, will have to choose between two areas in France. Each area get its color and people will have to wear a wrist band with the color of the area where they are going. People will be sorted and taken in big tents with fifty people getting the same wrist band. The will have to tell their identity (sirname, firstname, date of birth).

As soon as a tent is full, a bus will take all 50 people in the tent to the CAO with two people from associations, a fireman and a person from the civil security. The charities Salam and La Vie Active have agreed to collaborate with this system and go into the buses.

There will be 60 buses on monday, 40 on tuesday, 30 on wednesday.

People may be able to stay for up to one month in the CAO. They will then have to apply for asylum in France or run away.

OFII [French immigration and asylum authority] has promised that people fingerprinted in other countries won’t be deported, but we still don’t have any written guarantee of that. Dublin deportation [where refugees are deported to the first European country where they had fingerprints taken]  is happening in CAOs now.

Isolated minors are going to be interrogated to confirm that they are under 18 years old. France Terre d’Asile [a charity], PFPRA, DGEF [French authorities], and  the Home Office (UK) are going to conduct these interviews. Minors will then go to the CAP to « treat their situation ». Minors who want to stay in France will be taken to special CAOs for minors. There is still no information about their locations or the date that they will open.

So, a number of associations are actively collaborating with the eviction. France Terre d’asile are involved in selecting/rejecting the minors. Salam and La Vie Active will be on the CAO buses.

La PASS [medical centre] and La Vie Active will continue their activities during the eviction.

Meanwhile, access to the jungle will be controlled. Only the associations who get an agreement with the prefecture will be allowed in. Approved journalists will have access to the sorting center but don’t know yet if they will be allowed to go to the jungle. The Associations have given a list of their members. Anybody fuond in the jungle who is not on the list may be arrested. Four English people have already received OQTFs [Orders to Quit the French Territory].

Arrests of people and OQTFs for non-french people may happen more and more often next week. We thank warmly the school teachers, asked by the government to act as police interpreters during arrests, who have refused to do this.

Cops have used a lot of teargas over the last three nights. it seems that they were using a new kind of gas causing vomitting, nausea, and big headaches with persistent effects.

Home destruction is never “humanitarian”, sorting people never respect their “dignity”. The choice between CAO and detention center is not a choice.

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