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Calais Jungle camp: French authorities start to clear migrant camp


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The government has agreed not to accept any more child asylum seekers into the UK until the Calais jungle camp is cleared.

The mass dispersal of refugees and migrants from the camp to 240 asylum reception centres across France got underway this morning.

French authorities have asked the government to halt accepting any more child migrants until the camp is completely cleared.

Around 7,000 migrants will be relocated to refugee centres across France.

Migrants at the Calais camp known as The Jungle before work began to dismantle it
Migrants at the Calais camp known as The Jungle before work began to dismantle it

A government spokesman confirmed the pause would last 24 hours.

It is understood the pause will last 24 hours.

"Due to planned operational activity in Calais and at the request of the French authorities, we have reluctantly agreed that the transfer process will be temporarily paused," the Home Office said in a statement.

Children and teenagers have been coming over the past week - some with family in the UK and others judged to be vulnerable.

French officials say about 200 children have left Calais for the UK.

Gates to a huge warehouse opened at 8am local time - with residents starting the process of getting registered.

But, speaking on Good Morning Britain this morning, Dover MP Charlie Elphicke said the Calais Jungle should have been dismantled years ago.

He said we must now end the Calais migrant magnet once and for all.

The move comes after it was revealed social workers from Kent are on standby to help assess the ages of would-be child migrants.

People have been forced to live in squalor in the migrant camp known as the 'jungle' in Calais
People have been forced to live in squalor in the migrant camp known as the 'jungle' in Calais

Kent County Council has confirmed it was approached by the Home Office at the end of last week concerning the possibility of staff being able to assist in identifying appropriate vulnerable children wanting to come to the UK.

It followed criticism last week of the government over checks carried out on potential child migrants and their ages.

Kent County Council has also put on hold a decision to close one of its reception centres for child asylum seekers.

The council had been considering the future for its two reception centres as part of efforts to save money in the face of the rising costs for looking after vulnerable children.

The two centres are the Milbank centre in Ashford and the Swattenden centre in Cranbrook.

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