Immigrant crisis strains relations between France, England

by James Zogran-Werness–

An expansive grounds in Calais, France, where many migrants have made make-shift homes is in the process of being removed. The camp, known only as the “Jungle” camp, housed over 6,000 migrants, many of whom fled their homes in Afghanistan. The camp was said to symbolize the efforts of European countries to house the large influx of immigrants from the Middle East – a daunting task, to say the least.

With the outcast of these migrants, however, came the growth of another similar camp in Northeast Paris. This camp, which has been steadily growing since the evacuation of the “Jungle” camp, housed roughly 2,500 migrants. French police focused their efforts here after the destruction of the “Jungle” camp, and began conducting identity checks on those staying in Northeast Paris.

With the evacuation of this camp, another issue has appeared; there are now 1,500 minors without homes in France with nowhere to go. Currently, they’re being housed in cargo containers that have been converted to temporary homes, but it’s not a permanent solution. Many minors and other migrants are going through the legal process to be deemed “refugees,” a title that 85 percent are expected to achieve.

However, the French government has been urging England to take in a number of the minors. According to UN laws, England is required to accept responsibility for the care of some of the minors, if they have English heritage. However, this is a burden England is hesitant to accept, straining relations between the two countries.

Both are still in communication with the other in order to find this group of migrants a more permanent home, but the coming weeks will tell how this plays out.