Chaos continues at asylum seeker squat in Schaarbeek
The removal of all residents from the
asylum seeker squat in the Paleizenstraat in Schaarbeek (Brussels) continues
with difficulty. The police say the building where asylum seekers and homeless
people took up residence will be entirely cleared today. “Police will ensure
there is nobody left in the building” a police spokeswoman says.
Death at Schaarbeek asylum seeker squat
refugee organisation Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen is incensed by what is going
on. After a body was removed from the
premises this morning a spokesman for the organisation said: “It’s dreadful
that somebody died in the Paleizenstraat.
Alas, for us this is no surprise. Yesterday we saw total chaos as a
result on a failure to co-ordinate policy.
We are seeing it again today. We
fear for a repeat of this tragedy as long as the situation of people without
accommodation remains desperate”.
organisation calls for structural solutions including a mandatory dispersal
plan and deployment of the army to open extra reception centres.
lunchtime there was still a massive police presence at the building. Several hundred people were waiting for a bus
to take them to a medical screening.
This is available to registered asylum seekers, who are then given
accommodation as the law requires. Several
hundred people were helped yesterday, but says Michel Genet of Doctors of the
World “For today there doesn’t seem to be a plan”.
morning scores of people ended up behind fencing outside the building. Chaos reigned when several people were asked
to go back into the building to retrieve belongings. A large group of asylum seekers stormed towards
the building’s entrance. They were then
placed behind more fencing.
A number of
people are also believed to be refusing to leave the building.