The prefecture of Calais has taken steps to prevent the local branch of Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West (PEGIDA) marching through the French port town on Saturday, citing possible clashes with far left groups. Movement leaders in the area have vowed to march regardless, citing their right to free expression.
In a statement confirming the ban this afternoon, the local authority claimed that PEGIDA is an “extremist splinter group,” Le Figaro has reported. He justified the ban on the grounds that there is “tangible proof that this event poses a risk of generating confrontation between the ultra-right movement and the ultra-left movement in the centre of Calais.”
In response, local PEGIDA leaders have started a petition in which they announce their intention to march on Saturday in defiance of the ban.
“We regret to inform you that the French people do not want to abide by the ban,” the statement says.
It continues: “In France we have a right to free expression, and we will use it. We will be [in] Calais whether you like it or not… We want to defend ourselves against what is believed to be an injustice.”
PEGIDA was founded in Dresden, Germany in October 2014 to protest against the “Islamisation” of the country through mass migration from the Middle East and Africa. Since then, it has grown to a Europe-wide movement, with tens of thousands of ordinary German citizens taking part in peaceful silent protests in Germany regularly.
In the first Europe-wide event of PEGIDA’s history, marches will be taking place in 14 countries including Britain, France and Germany, under the slogan “Save our country, save our culture, save our future”. Five meetings have been scheduled in France, in Montpellier, Bordeaux, Saint-Brieuc, Calais, and Rungis.
Calais is on the front line of the clash of cultures between European residents and migrants from the Middle East and Africa. As many as 7,000 migrants are encamped near the town’s port, hoping to cross the Channel illegally and settle in the UK. Thousands more have gathered in nearby Dunkirk in a bid to avoid the authorities.
Lorry drivers running the gauntlet of Calais have been subject to attacks by migrants wanting to hitch a ride for some years now, but as the number of migrants has grown (and the presence of Western anarchists in the camp has increased), so the frequency of attacks has grown – and now the local townspeople are feeling the strain of housing a migrant colony on their doorstep.
Last week Breitbart London relayed shocking images of one family being attacked in their own front garden by migrants hurling tyres and other debris, egged on by Western far left activists. The attack took place as more than 2,000 European communists, socialists and other hard left groups gathered to show their solidarity with the migrants and call for an end to national borders.
During the same event, the French police were filmed running from a mixed crowd of migrants and leftist protesters, allowing them to sweep past and overrun the port itself. 50 migrants were able to climb aboard the UK bound ferry Spirit of Britain before being escorted off again.
The violence witnessed on the day prompted a local group, Calais Libre (Free Calais) to cancel a planned march through the town in protest at the presence of the migrants. Organisers explained that they wished to avoid violent confrontations like those seen at the left wing march, but many locals were disappointed not to be able to demonstrate their opposition to the situation. They were particularly frustrated that left wingers were allowed to go ahead with their violent march.