French president Hollande visits Calais but not the ‘Jungle’ to discuss refugee crisis

Published September 26th, 2016 - 11:00 GMT
Authorities say that 6500 to 7500 people are settled in the Jungle, while aid organisations put the figure at 10,000. (AFP/File)
Authorities say that 6500 to 7500 people are settled in the Jungle, while aid organisations put the figure at 10,000. (AFP/File)

French President Francois Hollande is visiting the French town of Calais on Monday, where thousands of migrants waiting to get to the United Kingdom are set to have their makeshift camp destroyed.

Hollande does not plan on visiting the site known as the "Jungle" instead meeting with local representatives from the police, business and aid organisations.

Hollande has promised to dismantle the camp, a process which French authorities are already preparing, with inhabitants set to be distributed to centres around the country.

Although camps have existed in Calais for years, the main Jungle site formed in early 2015 and consists of tents, makeshift huts and publicly funded containers. The camp is considered highly controversial in the region.

Authorities say that 6500 to 7500 people are settled there, while aid organisations put the figure at 10,000.

Migrants in Calais regularly try to climb on trucks or other vehicles in order to get to the United Kingdom via the Channel tunnel.

Last Wednesday former French president Nicolas Sarkozy also visited Calais, as campaigning for the country's centre-right presidential primaries begins.

Migration issues have taken an important role in political debate in the weeks leading up to the conservative primary, to be held in two rounds on November 20 and November 27.


© 2019 dpa GmbH

You may also like