'Explosive Situation': Pro-migrant voluntary associations forced to end their humanitarian work in Paris due to violence
Tensions between asylum-seekers and police, aggressive drug addicts, and inactivity of the government-made an unstable atmosphere in the Paris district that forced pro-migrant organizations to stop their volunteer work for immigrants
Solidarite Migrants Wilson distributes food to migrants next to Porte de la Chapelle in 18th district in Paris for 20 months. But since August 1st, the group has decided to stop their work because they can not cope with the growing level of violence in the area. "From the beginning, our mission was to serve hot drinks and bread and we did it for 20 months, every day. During the last month (July) we began to question our mission, because we do not want our volunteers to endanger life "- explained Philippe Caro of the organization.
According to Emperor, the situation is getting tense. Migrants cluster in terrible conditions, and some of them do not even have tents and just sleep on the ground, he said. "Sometimes early in the morning they wake up police and use a tear gas to drive them out," says Caro. The situation becomes even more dangerous when drug addicts appear in places where food is distributed and causing problems. "It creates additional tension," says Caro. "They are aggressive, including against volunteers. So this is an explosive situation, "he admits.
An activist blames both the French government and the Paris administration for their inactivity, which leads to an increasing level of violence in the district. "The state is responsible for people on the streets, to take over migrants. In the meantime, the authorities in Paris restrict access to public water fountains during the summer. It is irresponsible! "- regrets. This volunteer organization wrote a letter to the Paris administration explaining that their volunteers would not be able to work in the area due to tensions between police and migrants, as well as the massive presence of drug addicts.
The group urged the city authorities to improve the conditions in the district and solve the problem. Volunteers are scheduled to meet in September to discuss what the next group will do. France, like the rest of the EU, is currently taking the consequences of the greatest immigrant crisis since World War II. The number of asylum seekers in the country reached 100,000 in 2017, according to asylumineurope.org. In June this year, France was among those countries that said they did not intend to open immigrant reception facilities on their soil after a summit between EU leaders.
- 2 Aug, 2018
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