Today's expulsion of an estimated 700 migrants and asylum-seekers from camps in northern France risks aggravating the health problems that the authorities say prompted the evictions, Amnesty International has said.
French police this morning encircled the makeshift settlements occupied by migrants and asylum-seekers in the Calais area and began a process of dismantling them, justifying their actions as a response to a reported outbreak of scabies in the camps.
"The French authorities seem to be using forced evictions as a solution to a healthcare emergency, which risks causing more problems than it solves. It is unclear where those evicted will be able to find new homes and how they will access the necessary health-care treatment,” said Jezerca Tigani, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Europe and Central Asia Program.
“Evicting people is not the answer; a well-thought-out and appropriate health-care plan is what is needed. Sadly this isn’t new; the French authorities have a record of carrying out mass forced evictions without providing adequate alternatives for those evicted.”