The Plight of Migrants in Paris: Inside the Deplorable Conditions of Rue Erlanger Tent City

2023-06-03 08:12:32

Dozens of tents are set up for migrants in the schoolyard on rue Erlanger in Paris on June 2, 2023. Eloi PASSOT / LE FIGARO

REPORTAGE – For two months, these young migrants have been piling up by the hundreds in deplorable hygienic conditions, rue Erlanger in the heart of the 16th arrondissement.

A smell of urine and discharge leaps in the face when the gate creaks at 58 rue Erlanger. A surprising smell, to say the least, in this beautiful district of the 16th arrondissement of Paris. The gates open onto the deserted playground of a disused school, property of the City of Paris. Everything is empty. Only the smell given off by six construction toilets indicates that the premises are occupied. On the walls of the courtyard, graffiti in bright colors evoke Africa, alongside solidarity slogans. It is here that several hundred illegal immigrants have been living illegally for almost two months.

These young people come from Ivory Coast, Senegal, Guinea, Mali, Sudan, or even Afghanistan. To enter France clandestinely, they risked their lives on the zodiacs of the Mediterranean. Recognized as adults by the authorities upon their arrival, they were not able to benefit from social assistance for children (ASE). Most of them have filed an appeal to be recognized…

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