Since last September refugees have been housed by the Home Office at Napier Barracks in Folkestone and Penally barracks in West Wales. Hundreds of people are forced to live in the cramped and decrepit old barracks, without proper washing facilities and no hope of social distancing. Recently, a coronavirus outbreak hit the residents at Napier
On Friday 29th some residents at Napier Barracks reportedly rioted and caused a fire. According to the right wing media five people have since been arrested. Priti Patel seized the oppurtunity to denounce those who resisted.
One solicitor, Rachel Harger tweeted in response to Patel
My client, a victim of torture, having fled the civil war in Darfur is not being ‘accommodated’ – he is being detained in a military camp, in ear shot of regular gun fire from MoD firing range, trapped with 400 other ppl, at least 120 of whom have covid, and no proper healthcare https://t.co/AF8dVtsau9
— rachel harger (@rachelharger) January 29, 2021
Some residents of Napier Barracks wrote:
As you know, living in a terrible condition and unsafe when it comes to covid affected all the residents physically and mentally. Their protests, hunger strikes and suicide attempts have all been ignored by the home office…
…[We ask the Home Office] to make sure that Napier Barracks will be closed as it is no longer safe and secure. It is mandatory to see the people in the camp as human beings and as desperate people
It is of paramount importance that those of us who believe in mutual aid and shared struggle stand in solidarity with – and organise practical material support for – the refugees at Napier and Penally barracks, as they resist against the conditions in these Home Office ghettos. That includes doing everything we can to provide solidarity to those who have been arrested after yesterday’s fire.
Autonomy News Collective