‘Like torture’: Calais police accused of continued migrant rights abuses

Relentless and escalating programme of refugee evictions amounts to a campaign of harassment, say activists

Shortly before sunrise on 9 January, about 40 officers and officials gathered outside Calais police station as temperatures dipped to -3C (26.6F). Shortly after, in a well-drilled procedure, a nine-vehicle convoy started down the road towards the first of five forced evictions of makeshift refugee camps planned for that morning.

When the convoy arrived at the camp, just a few miles from the city centre, masked police in black uniforms chased refugees away from their tents and belongings. Some of the other 150 refugees who had been sheltering at the camp had already packed and fled before authorities arrived. Soon the camp was empty; frost-covered sleeping bags and jackets were all that remained.

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