Jungle clearance declared a success despite child safety fears


Officials from the French government say their clearance programme for the Calais migrant camp known as the Jungle has been successful.
The announcement that they are nearing completion comes even though worried charity leaders say there are still hundreds of child refugees who have not yet been registered, have no one to look after them, and have nowhere to go.
However, Pascal Brice, who is head of the Office for Refugees and Stateless People, moved to reassure people that everyone was now accounted for because once leaving the sprawling Jungle, they were registered at a processing centre set up on the edge of the makeshift city.
Mr Brice said: “It is a matter of satisfaction for the French administration because all those people now are in centres all around France and the Jungle is over.”
His statement came as firefighters battled a number of blazes which sprung up in the camp and have been blamed on refugees and migrants who do not want to leave the place they have been calling home.
Charities on the ground say they are concerned because they believe the processing centre at the camp has been shut before children living without accompanying relatives in the area had been processed and transported to other asylum centres.
As French officials were saying they were very nearly at the end of the process, groups of migrants could still be seen walking out of the camp to the processing warehouse, while others were simply sat in groups nearby.
Nearly 4,500 migrants and refugees and some 1,200 children have been registered since the camp clearance began, say the authorities.
The rate of demolition work is set to be hugely scaled up on Thursday as much bigger machinery is sent in.
However the child protection charity Save The Children says it remains extremely concerned about children who had still not been registered as fires began to spring up across the Jungle.
The charity said there were at least 100 children who were still waiting to be processed when the warehouse was closed. It believes 300 children were turned away from the centre, and were left without any idea of what they should do.
So far, four migrants have been arrested in connection with starting the fires in the camp. According to the Help Refugees organisation, a bus which was set aside to take women and children out of the camp, and a makeshift youth centre were also targeted in arson attacks.