French police expel migrants at Calais

The police action comes after anti-immigration parties made gains in European Parliament elections.
By Ed Adamczyk Contact the Author   |   May 28, 2014 at 11:40 AM
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CALAIS , France, May 28 (UPI) -- Riot police in the English Channel city of Calais, France, dismantled makeshift campsites and expelled hundreds of migrants living in them.

The migrants, largely from Afghanistan and Iraq, sought to smuggle themselves into Britain. They were told to leave because of an outbreak of scabies, a skin disease. No injuries or arrests were reported in the raid.

The evacuation came days after a European Parliament elections in which anti-immigration parties across the 28-member European Union made sizable gains. France's rightwing National Front party finished ahead of the two mainstream parties, and had a particularly strong showing in the Calais region, where official results indicated it received one of every three votes. Police said there was no connection between the expulsion of the migrants and the vote.

By Wednesday, many migrants had left for undisclosed locations. Settlements like this have been seen in the Calais area since 2002, when a local Red Cross detention area was shut down. While migrants return to the area in the hope of entering England, British authorities have made it clear they have little interest in taking in undocumented immigrants.

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