Tensions at the Calais migrant camp in northern France are heating up once again after 16 police officers were injured in a single night as migrants tried to cross into Britain.
Around 200 migrants threw objects at police and tried to block traffic on the main road to the port. A police spokesman said they spent three hours trying to calm the situation before security forces fired “almost 300” tear gas grenades.
The Local quotes police sources who told them that a total of 26 officers suffered injuries after being hit by rocks, although none was severely hurt.
Gilles Debove of the SGP Police-Force Ouvrière union said: “It’s the first time that it’s been this violent and that we’ve unfortunately had so many colleagues injured. We’re worried that if one day we have a revolt inside the camp, it will be pandemonium.”
“The problem is you can’t predict what will happen here. We work from day to day.
“In all honesty we just don’t know what the solution is to this crisis. There are 6,000 people living in this camp. We will do our job and do it with courage but the officers are very downbeat. They have 26 injured colleagues.”
Authorities have recently bolstered security around the port of Calais, as well as the Eurotunnel site, with French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve claiming “you can no longer get into Britain” by hiding on trains or lorries.
Although clashes between police and migrants are a regular occurrence in Calais, Sunday night’s clashes were far worse than normal and are provoking fears that situation may deteriorate further.
The migrants are mostly from the Middle East and East Africa, with the majority hoping to stay only temporarily before smuggling themselves into Britain. However, many have been frustrated in their attempts as Britain refuses to let them in.
Last month, however, Breitbart London reported on British anarchists who tried to help the migrants cross into the UK by encouraging them to break down fences and storm the Channel Tunnel terminal.
An emergency services spokesman said: “They were very clearly helping to break down fences and guiding the migrants in a co-ordinated attack.
“Fighting broke out with security guards, and we had to treat around ten migrants. Five ambulances were at the scene.”
It is not known whether any anarchists assisted the migrants in Sunday’s violence.