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French police clear migrant camps in Calais

Around 800 asylum seekers who have fled Asia, the Middle East and Africa in the hope of reaching Britain have been cleared from the French port city of Calais, after authorities claimed there had been a scabies outbreak in their makeshift camps.

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Charity 'furious' at 'reckless' Calais camp clearings

Medical charity Doctors of the World (Médecins du Monde) has criticised the clearing and evicting of hundreds of refugees, mainly from Syria, Afghanistan and Eritrea, from their makeshift camps in Calais.

Read: Bulldozers begin clearing refugee camp in Calais

The charity says evicting the vulnerable migrants could have serious health consequences for both evicted migrants and the wider community. UK Director Leigh Daynes said:

We’re scandalised and furious at this reckless and ill-considered eviction.

Evictions will not reduce the number of migrants on the streets of Calais, but will disperse them, making them harder to assist, document or trace. This will further impinge on their basic right to healthcare and shelter.

International Programme manager Gareth Walker said the eviction risks spreading the scabies epidemic, not containing it.

Dispersing those in the camp will not only prevent those with scabies being treated but could cause it to spread to other communities and camps, significantly risking public health. Evicting people could also cause them to attempt higher risk strategies for getting to the UK – leading to more unnecessary deaths.

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