Socking VIDEO: Police Clash with Migrants, Protestors outside Jungle Camp in Calais

Sun Oct 2, 2016 17:41:48

French riot police fired tear gas and water cannon at migrants and protesters who gathered in defiance of a ban on Saturday (October 1) outside the shanty town near Calais known as “the Jungle”, local authorities said.

About 200 migrants and some 50 protesters assembled under a bridge to protest against living conditions in the nearby camp that President Francois Hollande has vowed to close by the end of the year.

Police clashed with migrants as they pushed them back to the camp while activists threw stones at the security forces.

The migrants want to enter Britain, but the government in London argues that migrants seeking asylum need to do so under European Union law in the country where they enter.

"Open the (UK) border, let them through. That's' the political solution. In France there is no political solution and we denounce that," said an unidentified migrant who lives in the Calais Jungle.

Thousands of migrants fleeing war and poverty, from Afghanistan to Syria, have converged on Calais over the past two years.

If France stopped trying to prevent migrants from entering Britain, Britain would ultimately find itself obliged to deal with the matter when asylum-seekers land on its shores a short distance by ferry or Channel tunnel from France's Calais coast.

Many attempt to sneak onto trains using the Channel Tunnel or lorries heading to Britain, where they hope to settle.

The presence of the migrants has led to tension with some residents and a permanent police deployment.

Another 150 protesters who left Paris on Saturday aboard four coaches were blocked by police at a toll road about 30 miles (48 km) south of Calais, the deputy police commissioner Vincent Berton said.

"We have a protest that was forbidden by the Pas-de-Calais police commissioner because it represented a severe disturbance to public order, that is why we contained the protesters at the entrance of camp on the open ground," he said.

France plans to relocate the migrants in small groups around the country but right-wing opponents of the Socialist leader are raising the heat ahead of the election in April 2017, accusing Francois Hollande of mismanaging a problem that is ultimately a British one.

Immigration was one of the main drivers of Britain's vote in June to leave the EU.

It is also likely to be major factor in France's presidential election. London and Paris have struck agreements on issues such as the recently begun construction of a giant wall on the approach road to Calais port in an attempt to try to stop migrants who attempt daily to board cargo trucks bound for Britain.

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