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France: Calais residents comment on looming Brexit02:46

France: Calais residents comment on looming Brexit

France, Calais
January 31, 2020 at 18:35 GMT -00:00 · Published

Local residents of the French border town of Calais, located on the other side of the tunnel leading to the United Kingdom, shared their reactions to the United Kingdom's looming departure from the European Union on Friday.

John Beliard showed his approval with the police reinforcements along the border with UK, which was announced by the Interior Minister Christophe Castaner in order to guarantee security ahead of Brexit.

"They [the UK] should take their migrants because we do not want them anymore here in Calais. The border is in the middle of La Manche (English Channel) and not here, at port of Calais, so they [UK] should assume a little bit of their responsibilities, because we do not want them [migrants] here," Beliard said.

Melanie Vandewalle shared his point of view, suggesting that closing the borders will limit the migration flow and therefore, Vandewalle supposed, would help resolve the issue of unemployment. "When there are the migrants willing to enter, the enterprises are closing, also transport stations closing because of this actually."

In the meantime, Austin Osmwelyi, himself a migrant, gave his own opinion on the situation, saying that coming to Calais was a "waste of time" and that "right now with the Brexit and everything, the economy is getting bad. We have to look for more ways to eat, we have to look for ways to shelter for yourself. It's not easy keeping up with these things. And we are not from these parts. It is kind of different."

Cindy Averlant, however, was more concerned about the potential effects to the local economy rather than migration.

"I am more afraid for the Calais economy, which went well collaborating with UK tourists. Many British tourists were here. I am afraid that after Brexit, the border controls will bother them," he said.

The UK joined the European Economic Community in 1973 and after 47 years it is the first member state to withdraw from the EU.

On January 9, the Brexit bill was approved at its third reading with 330 MPs voting for and 231 against in the House of Commons.

France: Calais residents comment on looming Brexit02:46
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Local residents of the French border town of Calais, located on the other side of the tunnel leading to the United Kingdom, shared their reactions to the United Kingdom's looming departure from the European Union on Friday.

John Beliard showed his approval with the police reinforcements along the border with UK, which was announced by the Interior Minister Christophe Castaner in order to guarantee security ahead of Brexit.

"They [the UK] should take their migrants because we do not want them anymore here in Calais. The border is in the middle of La Manche (English Channel) and not here, at port of Calais, so they [UK] should assume a little bit of their responsibilities, because we do not want them [migrants] here," Beliard said.

Melanie Vandewalle shared his point of view, suggesting that closing the borders will limit the migration flow and therefore, Vandewalle supposed, would help resolve the issue of unemployment. "When there are the migrants willing to enter, the enterprises are closing, also transport stations closing because of this actually."

In the meantime, Austin Osmwelyi, himself a migrant, gave his own opinion on the situation, saying that coming to Calais was a "waste of time" and that "right now with the Brexit and everything, the economy is getting bad. We have to look for more ways to eat, we have to look for ways to shelter for yourself. It's not easy keeping up with these things. And we are not from these parts. It is kind of different."

Cindy Averlant, however, was more concerned about the potential effects to the local economy rather than migration.

"I am more afraid for the Calais economy, which went well collaborating with UK tourists. Many British tourists were here. I am afraid that after Brexit, the border controls will bother them," he said.

The UK joined the European Economic Community in 1973 and after 47 years it is the first member state to withdraw from the EU.

On January 9, the Brexit bill was approved at its third reading with 330 MPs voting for and 231 against in the House of Commons.

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