France removed 1,500 African migrants from an illegal camp in Paris, placing them in safer housing environments due to security concerns Wednesday.
Police disbanded the Millenaire migrant camp in northeast France and placed the asylum seekers in a variety of temporary housing units around Paris, Reuters reported.
The camp housed mainly young men predominantly from Somalia, Eritrea, and Sudan who were living in makeshift tents on the side of a canal, which raised public health concerns. Gang violence between migrants have caused police to forced the people out of the camps and place them in gymnasiums prior to getting resettled, the Evening Standard reported. (RELATED: France Unveils Plan To ‘Systematically’ Deport Illegal Migrants)
“Police services will be fully committed to preventing such camps being built again,” Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said in a statement.
“A lot of these migrants believe they will end up being welcomed here, in France. We try to inform them on the realities they face, because if they have left their fingerprints in another country, they will be expelled,” said Yann Manzi, a memeber of the NGO Utopia 56, which aims to help refugees.
Collomb also noted that this is France’s 34th evacuation since June 2015. France has experienced a large wave of migrants traveling from Africa and the Middle East for the past three years.