On the Indian Ocean archipelago of Mayotte, a French overseas territory and département (county), a police operation launched by Paris and codenamed Wuambushu has begun a crackdown against Comoran "illegal immigrants" who face eviction from their shanty town homes and deportation back to the nearby Comoro islands. The decision to launch the roundup is a political monstrosity and the prolongation of a crime, argues Mediapart’s publishing editor Edwy Plenel in this op-ed article. While maintaining its sovereignty over Mayotte in flagrant violation of international law, he writes, France is staging a massive expulsion of human beings on the pretext that they are foreigners, whereas they are of the same people as Mayotte’s native population.
A French court has ruled as illegal a major police operation planned for Tuesday to expel Comoran migrants from a shanty town on France's Indian Ocean archipelago of Mayotte, where a crackdown on illegal immigration and delinquency has begun backed by security forces sent from the mainland.
Christian Ally Moussa, 42, drowned along with about 34 other people when their boat went down off the coast of Madagascar on March 12th as they were attempting to reach the French island of Mayotte, from where he had earlier been deported before he was able to attend a hearing over his application for French citizenship.
Mediapart can reveal details of a report compiled by six French ministries about the tragic situation faced by France's Indian Ocean archipelago. Covering issues such as health, housing, law and order, education and the legal system, the report's contents are devastating for the French state. Drawn up in January 2022, the document shows that the security-focused approach of interior minister Gérald Darmanin cannot, on its own, solve Mayotte's many problems. Fabrice Arfi and Nejma Brahim report.
Violence is reaching unprecedented levels in the French overseas département of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean, prompted by the arrival of migrants from the neighbouring island nation of Comoros on makeshift boats. The result has been regular expulsions and repatriation of illegal migrants, clashes between the new arrivals and locals, and even riots. The situation has been exacerbated by the Covid crisis. Meanwhile the heavy-handed security response by the authorities in this small département has caused disquiet among local associations. Julien Sartre reports.