7 Oct 2009


Good for her, glad to have this to put up.

- UK and French authorities plan charter flight to deport Afghan ‘Jungle’ migrants

A charter plane due to transport Afghan asylum seekers from France back to the war torn country this week should be cancelled immediately, said Green Party leader and MEP Caroline Lucas today.

French and British authorities are said to be organising a charter flight via Bakou in Azerbaijan bound for Afghanistan in order to deport several dozen Afghan migrants from "The Jungle"– the controversial camp in Calais which was raided by police last week.

South East Euro-MP Caroline Lucas has joined with colleagues in the European Parliament to call upon the French and British authorities to halt any deportation efforts towards Afghanistan.

She commented: “This charter flight must not be allowed to leave – not this week nor later. Afghanistan is a nation at war and it is disgusting that we are so eager to send back those who fled their country to seek protection in Europe.

“Many migrants into France and the UK are fleeing in part from the dire consequences of the West’s foreign policy mistakes in the Middle East. Given this reality, you would hope that these governments would take their responsibilities to the international community more seriously.

“This joint charter flight is contrary to the principles of collective deportations and non-refoulement. By seriously endangering the lives of these refugees, France and the UK are not complying with their international commitments to human rights.”

Dr Lucas concluded: “The French have not been playing their part in allowing people to claim asylum in Calais and must commit to making the official procedures for seeking asylum more accessible. Equally, other EU Member states must recognise their duty to share the responsibility.”

The majority of refugees in the ‘Jungle’ have had no contact with official authorities since entering the EU. Many face a risk of deportation before they have even been interviewed in order to determine whether they are seeking asylum and are, therefore, protected by EU asylum law.

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