More Paris squats ready to spark: police

1st September 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Sept 1 (AFP) - There are around 60 squats in Paris in as dangerous a state as the one that went up in flames this week, causing the deaths of seven African immigrants, police said Thursday.

PARIS, Sept 1 (AFP) - There are around 60 squats in Paris in as dangerous a state as the one that went up in flames this week, causing the deaths of seven African immigrants, police said Thursday.

Officers said they had not yet carried out evictions of the buildings, but forced evacuations were announced by the interior ministry following Tuesday's blaze in the central Marais district.

In all, three fires have killed nearly 50 people, most of them African immigrants, in the capital since April. In all the cases, flames raced up the wooden staircases of the rundown buildings.

Municipal officials have expressed reservations over Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy's order to have all squats emptied of their occupants, often illegal immigrants, saying that they would only support the procedure if alternative lodgings were provided for those living in them.

The police service in Paris said it would deal with evictions on a case-by-case basis, and only in cooperation with City Hall.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news, squats, fire, low-cost housing, African imigrants, Sarkozy

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