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To: French Ambassador Sylvie Bermann

LOVE NOT RAZOR WIRE: Justice for people on the UK-French Border

Demand an end to the violence committed by French authorities and police to refugees and migrants on the French-UK Borders

Why is this important?

To the French Ambassador; Mme Sylvie Bermann,

We are writing to you to express a deep concern about the treatment of refugees and migrants on the French-UK border. On the 31st January, nearly a month after the ‘exclusion zone’ was announced in the Calais refugee camp - a church and mosque were demolished by the French authorities. This is contrary to a promise made publicly by the Prefect of Calais that these would be protected. Armed CRS police stood by as the demolition took place. The exclusion zone – until recently home to 2000 people - has become the scene of regular unprovoked tear gas attacks from the police, who also continue to shoot refugees with rubber bullets and water canons, randomly beat people walking in the streets, and are complicit with aggression from far-right activists.

While we recognise that the UK government must bear equal responsibility for the existence of these camps, we, as residents of the UK, with or without papers, call on you, the French Ambassador, to put pressure on the French government to cease sanctioning such pitiless and violent behaviour, which demonstrates complete disregard for human dignity. The refugees come here for safety and are greeted by razor wire and armed police. Two nations who pride themselves on their democracy, fairness and justice should not be committing this appalling violence against people who are fleeing war, terrorism, poverty, drought and persecution.

Both governments must now recognise that this is a global and long-term issue and act accordingly, not with hostility and border controls, but with compassion. This situation is not going away: the long-term issues of the current ‘refugee crisis’ will continue to escalate due, not only to intensifying conflicts, but also climate change. Thus it is essential that we find a kinder, more rational and human response to the situation. We are asking you, as the French Ambassador, to take a stand against the violent response of both the French and British authorities, and represent to them the shame we feel at both our nations’ behaviour.

We are here in solidarity with the refugees and migrants trapped on the border with the UK, those already here and those to come, whose voices and stories are not being heard and whose basic humanity is being ignored.

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2016-02-10 12:33:21 +0000

100 signatures reached

2016-02-09 15:48:09 +0000

50 signatures reached

2016-02-08 21:24:05 +0000

25 signatures reached

2016-02-08 17:45:24 +0000

10 signatures reached