Over the last year, law enforcement in the Northern French city of Calais has worked hard to shut down the city’s “Jungle,” a hodgepodge tent city overflowing with migrants from Africa and the Middle East. Due to Calais’s close proximity to the UK, the camp became a waypoint for migrants navigating their way through Europe to more hospitable territory in the UK, with many of the displaced individuals attempting to sneak on board cargo vehicles bound for the Channel Tunnel.
But what the BBC once called, “a powerful symbol of Europe’s failure to cope with the migrant crisis,” is now a heavily-militarized space, and the refugees who once inhabited it have moved on to new port cities that give them similar access to the United Kingdom. One of these cities is Ouistreham, which has become home to more than 90 refugees in the past months, most of them from the Sudan.
The migrants have faced heavy discrimination since their appearance, with locals fearing for their safety and for a potential drop in tourism as a result of the new arrivals. But if we have learned anything from Calais, it is that these refugees are not going anywhere; they have nowhere to go, so they will just keep moving from place to place until France — and Europe as whole — find lasting, functional solutions to this migrant crisis. Let’s hope Emmanuel Macron and Theresa May are up for the job.