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French authorities begin demolition of vast Mayotte shantytown

Neelam Rahim |

2-minute read
23 May 2023 | 21:06 CAT

Image: Bangkok Post

Image: Bangkok Post

Authorities on the French Indian Ocean Island of Mayotte on Monday began demolishing homes in a large slum in an operation against sub-standard housing and illegal migration.

Diggers started destroying the Majicavo slum early Monday morning as part of Operation Wuambushu (“Take Back” in the local language), which the French authorities first tried to launch last month.

Human Rights Journalist Andy Vermaut spoke to Radio Islam International. He explains the French deployment of hundreds of police officers and gendarmes in Mayotte for demolishing homes due to the island’s inadequate housing conditions, and many commanded migrants.

Speaking of the procedures taken in place before the authorities began demolishing, Vermaut said the specific details of the procedures were assessing the legality and conditions of the structures and not notifying the residents and providing them with an opportunity to address any legal or safety concerns.

Associations have denounced Wuambushu as a “brutal” measure violating the rights of migrants, but local elected officials and many residents have supported it.

The demolition of Talus 2 was initially scheduled to take place on April 25 but was suspended by a court decision. Two subsequent legal rulings then authorised the French state to proceed.

Listen to the full interview on Your World Today with host Mufti Yusuf Moosagie.


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