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Calais Welcome

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Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 36

PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 2009 6:49 pm    Post subject: Calais Welcome Reply with quote

film showing at Brixton Ritzy from next week. It's called Welcome and it's about a migrant who is in Calais and starts swimming lessons with a teacher so that he can swim the channel.
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Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 36

PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2010 9:29 pm    Post subject: A bad weekend in Calais Reply with quote

For Immediate Release: 05/02/10

Police blockade newly-opened space for migrants and activists in Calais.

Today, despite a heavy police presence migrants successfully entered the
newly-opened Kronstadt hangar at the invitation of No Borders activists.
The hangar is intended to be a space for information-sharing, debate and
practical solidarity.

Together, around 100 activists and migrants broke through police lines
chanting “Freedom! Freedom!”. Riot police in full body protection are
currently circling the building and threatening the migrants with mass
arrests. People are currently occupying the building.

Stephane Blois, from Calais Migrant Solidarity, explains: “When the police
cleared the jungle, they used coaches like those outside the hangar to
transport hundreds of migrants to the detention centre. What we see here
tonight is another example of repressive policing where migrants are
routinely arrested and then shortly after released shortly. We want to
work together here to resist this coordinated strategy of cross-channel
oppression.” [1]

The increase in opposition to the policies of the French state in Calais
are testiment to the failure of an immigration system which rests on using
police repression to drive away migrants. [2] Besson´s attempt to make the
town a “migrant-free zone” can never be successful because it does not
acknowledge the number of factors that contribute to migration.

The events of tonight show the force of the state´s response to any form
of opposition to the current border regime. The hangar was opened in
response to the extreme situation in Calais and as an act of solidarity
with migrants. Jenny Roberts said: “This is not a new Sangatte. This is
the result of the endless persecution of migrants in Calais, and the
hangar was opened with the support of local humanitarian organisations and
some residents.” [3]

To speak to someone in the hangar call 0033 699 746 700

Contact in France:
Contact in the UK:


[1] In November, NoBorders activists from both sides of the Channel
organised a demonstration at the centre of joint intelligence in
Folkestone and in December the first joint charter flight between the UK
and France took place.

[2] The media response to the high-profile destruction of the jungle in
September showed the concerns surrounding the methods used by the French
government . Alan Johnson, the UK Home Secretary, said he was “delighted”
with the operation.

[3] No Borders activists have maintained a presence in Calais since the No
Border camp last June, and this new collaboration with associations is an
expression of the urgent need to have a political response to ongoing
oppression which has escalated since the destruction of the jungle in
September. For an overview, see

Latest Update:

The following was posted by Calais Migrants Solidarity on Indymedia:

About 12.30 French time today everyone was in the No Borders/Kronstadt
warehouse, chilling out, when police came to surround the building. People
were told they can leave the building, but couldn’t return for lunch.
Police say this is an ‘Order from the council’.

The response from the 100 or so people in the building was ‘fine, then we
won’t leave’. A phone call to someone in the building described the
situation as “everyone seemed to understand our political stance.
Eventually some people tried to leave, and discovered that all the
surrounding roads had been blocked by police. Then riots cops charged us
several times, hitting out with batons. A friend got whacked on the mouth
while lying on the floor – we managed to find a way out and are on our way
to hospital now. One of the undercover cops, calling himself Msr Buzin,
said that anyone can leave, but can’t return for to eat [?]. They are
effectively starving people out of the building”

There are still about 100 people inside, mainly Pashtun. Local French
journalists are around, but no British press.

If anyone can pass this on to UK press that would be good.

Also more help on the ground appreciated

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