Invitation to an organising meeting in Calais, March 7th-8th

Noborder Camp in Calais, June 2009

Invitation to an organising meeting in Calais, March 7th-8th

In the last few months activists from France and the UK have met to discuss ways to increase transnational solidarity with migrants along the coast of northern France. We have decided to hold a transnational protest camp in Calais at the end of June. The camp aims to highlight the situation of the migrants on the border and establish a strong network of solidarity.

The camp will work in conjunction with those groups and individuals already active in the area. We are calling for an organising meeting on Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th March in Calais to discuss the political and practical aspects of the camp and its mobilisation. The meeting is open to any individuals or groups who act in solidarity with migrants and their struggle for freedom of movement. We see migration controls as serving the needs of capitalism whilst causing only suffering and divisions amongst us. Therefore we call for the abolition of all migration controls: No Borders, No Nations!

While Europe has tightened its external border controls, especially with Northern Africa, one of its internal borders is often overseen. Many refugees who come to continental Europe aim to reach the UK. Following an agreement between the French and British governments in 2002 which led to the closure of the Red Cross centre in Sangatte/Calais, people are forced to sleep rough in the "jungle" around the harbour, where they are subject to constant harassment by authorities, and are at risk of arbitrary detention and deportation. Meanwhile there is increasing repression against those
individuals and groups in the area who offer support to the migrants. By pushing the UK border onto French territory, the British government has made it impossible for many people to claim asylum in the UK.

The border regime must be understood in its political and economic context:

We think that the struggle for equal rights for migrant workers and the struggle against the European detention and asylum system are closely connected. We also believe that we need to intensify the transnational co-operation between initiatives made by people on both sides of the border who find the current situation unbearable.