LILLE, Feb 4, 2016:
France on Wednesday banned protests in the refugee hotspot of Calais ahead of a planned march by anti-Islamic organisation Pegida.
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said he had asked local authorities in the northern French port to prevent all demonstrations “regardless of the organisers”.
He said the ban particularly covered “all these groups that create tensions, division and violence” and would last as long as necessary.
At least 4,000 migrants and refugees are living in a camp on the outskirts of Calais, nicknamed the “Jungle”, hoping to smuggle themselves across to Britain on lorries or trains.
Anti-Islamic group Pegida, which began as a movement in Germany in mid-2014 and has since spread to France and other European countries, was planning to march in the town centre on Saturday.
The local prefect had requested a ban on the march, saying it was organised by “an extremist group” and threatened to trigger clashes between far-right and far-left movements.