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Video reveals disturbance at Napier Barracks


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A video shows tensions are running high at an army barracks which is being used to house asylum seekers.

The Napier Barracks at Shornecliffe in Folkestone is being used by the Home Office as a temporary assessment facility for people who have come to the UK to seek asylum.

Journalist Jack Shenker caught footage of police dealing with a disturbance at the camp

It comes after the government body revealed in a public meeting that it is struggling to house everyone arriving in the country, some by small boats across the English Channel, and is now taking 'every bed' it can.

Napier Barracks was transformed into accommodation for the asylum seekers, all single, adult men, in September and can accommodate around 400 people.

Since then, there have been both protests and welcome events held outside the metal gates from people who fall on either side of the debate surrounding people crossing the Channel.

Complaints have also been heard about the living conditions inside, with one person previously telling KentOnline that some guests had resorted to self harm.

And now footage shows police having to attend the barracks following a disturbance yesterday.

Police were called to Napier Barracks to reports of a 'minor disturbance'
Police were called to Napier Barracks to reports of a 'minor disturbance'

According to Jack Shenker, a journalist who was at the scene, the protest was started because the asylum seekers are not getting enough answers about how long they will be housed at the barracks for.

As a result he says the gates were locked and police called.

In the video, the guests can be heard chanting 'freedom'. One also asks the police officer 'to do something please'.

An officer however requests that they stop shaking the gates or face possible arrest for criminal damage.

No arrests were carried out however.

It comes after the gates were reportedly locked by security
It comes after the gates were reportedly locked by security

A police spokesman said: "Kent Police was called at 3.39pm on November 16 to a report of a minor disturbance at Napier Barracks in Folkestone.

"Officers attended to offer assistance while the incident was dealt with. No arrests were made."

The witness from yesterday's protest also described the living conditions inside the army camp as 'cold and cramped' and said social distancing is impossible.

A Home Office spokesman said: “We are aware of an incident at Napier House to which Kent Police were called. The incident was resolved with no arrests being made."

Read more: All the latest news from Folkestone

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