French Vow to Destroy 'Jungle' Route to Britain

Article excerpt

Byline: Peter Allen in Paris

FRANCE's largest illegal migrant camp will be razed "by the end of next week" with inhabitants told: "You will not get to England any more via Calais."

French immigration minister Eric Besson gave riot police the green light to clear the notorious "Jungle" near the port-- and made it clear that he was having to take tough action because Britain was "soft" on immigration.

"The paradoxical situation in which France finds itself is that we're trying to protect entry to the United Kingdom," said Mr Besson.

He said Britain's generous welfare benefits encourage people from all over the world to use his country as a base to get across the Channel, where they claim asylum or else disappear into the black economy.

"But enough is enough," said Mr Besson in a television interview. "You won't get to England any more via Calais."

And, fulfilling a pledge first made in April, Mr Besson said police supported by army units would "destroy the Jungle before the end of next week". He said crime was on the increase in Calais around the notorious shanty town, where a London journalism student was raped last summer. …