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article imageWork ends to clear shelters in part of France migrant camp

By AFP     Mar 16, 2016 in World

Work to clear the last makeshift shelters from part of the migrant camp known as "The Jungle" in the northern French port of Calais was completed Wednesday.

Authorities have left just a few structures housing communal facilities such as mosques or canteens in the 7.5-hectare (18.5-acre) southern part of the camp.

Police had fired teargas to disperse protesters when the operation to raze the wooden and tarpaulin structures began on February 29.

More than 1,000 people had lived in that part of "The Jungle" as they waited to try to scramble on to lorries waiting to board ferries or Channel Tunnel shuttle trains to Britain.

The migrants believe they have a better chance of finding work in Britain, and some have family ties there.

Some of the migrants have moved to more permanent accommodation in shipping containers near to The Jungle, while others have headed for camps further along the coast, but hundreds are still living in the northern part of the camp.

Migrants' representatives warned the French government in a statement that it would be "unacceptable" to try to clear the northern sector as well.

The local authorities have stated several times that they want to limit the camp to 2,000 residents, but have stipulated that those who stay must move into the containers.

The camp made of containers can hold up 1,500 people and 400 places are also available to women and children in another centre nearby.

Hundreds of shopkeepers and restaurant owners from Calais held a protest in Paris on March 7 to complain that they have suffered heavy losses as a result of the presence of migrants in the port.

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