More than two hundred migrants sheltered after the evacuation of a Parisian tunnel

About two hundred and thirty migrants, men, women and children, were evacuated, Friday, December 10 in the early morning, from a tunnel connecting Paris to Seine-Saint-Denis, where they had set up a camp, to be put to the shelter in accommodation centers, noted journalists from Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Before dawn and in the rain, these people who had deployed their tents for a month and a half in the narrow tunnel of the 19e arrondissement of Paris, picked up their belongings to rush into coaches which transported them mainly to centers in the Ile-de-France region and others to the south-west of France.

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A total of 237 people, many from Africa, were treated, including “48 people in family”, specified the prefecture of the Ile-de-France region. People go “Benefit from an assessment of their administrative situation, social, health and administrative support before being redirected to accommodation adapted to their situation”, also underlined the prefecture.

“The temperatures have already dropped for several weeks, so it was really time for the situation to unblock. These people lived crowded together in dramatic conditions, with a worrying health situation ”, explained on the spot Pierre Mathurin, an official of the association Utopia 56 which brought its assistance to these exiles.

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Lack of accommodation places

“We feared that what happened in the Bercy camp would happen again here”, he continued, with reference to a saber attack suffered by migrants on Wednesday in the 12e district of Paris. A man was arrested after injuring two migrants – including one seriously – and degrading six tents. “It is time for the government to realize the risks these people run on the streets, in the current climate”, added Mathurin.

At the end of November, more than three hundred residents and activists had demonstrated between the Pré-Saint-Gervais (Seine-Saint-Denis) and Paris to demand the shelter of these migrants who were then around 150 living. in the tunnel. If Friday’s operation took ” so much time “, believes Ian Brossat, deputy mayor of Paris in charge of housing and refugee protection, it is because of the “Congestion of accommodation places”. “We need a first reception site. The reality is that the passage through the street has almost become an automatic airlock to have a place of accommodation behind ”, he laments.

Haila (the first name has been changed), an Afghan asylum seeker taken care of on Friday, does not say the opposite: this is his twentieth shelter, he assures. “I have no hope”, he blurted out, before getting on a coach and adding: “I know the situation. After two weeks, they will say the same thing: you have to go out. “

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The World with AFP

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More than two hundred migrants sheltered after the evacuation of a Parisian tunnel