People from the jungle were continuing to try to come and join the demonstration. A group were walking in the road with a banner from the jungle before being stopped by a van of Gendarmerie Mobile. They were told that they were holding an illegal demonstration and were prevented from continuing. For the next hour there was a stand-off with no one from the jungle being able to go to the town; whether they intended to join the demonstration there or not. Many people claiming asylum in France had appointments that they were prevented from attending, and one man was ripped from his bicycle as he casually cycled past. As more and more people were stopped and the group grew, the decision was made to walk back toward the jungle, taking the road, stopping oncoming traffic. At the junction with the motorway, they held a sit-down protest for around half an hour. At this time they made the decision together to move up the ramp and take the highway. At first only a few took the road, but then as they shouted down to those staying in the jungle, numbers began to swell. They held the highway for close to an hour and then those who were on their way back from the demonstration in town were able to join. There were about a hundred and fifty people on the bridge above the jungle stopping traffic. Chants of “We are human beings!”, “Open the Border!”, “Stop the violence!” and “We are hopeful!” were being shouted. This action was able to bring the endless flow of goods to the UK to a grinding halt, create a traffic jam through which a lot of people were able to try and hide themselves in UK bound lorries, and gave a strong voice to those stuck here in Calais. Even if May and Cazeneuve could not hear them from whatever hole they’d crawled in, the disruption that they caused was certainly felt. After about an hour of occupation the CRS arrived in force to try to take back the highway. People shouted at them and were able to resist the initial police charges. When these intimidation tactics failed, and more people joined the fight, the CRS got their CS gas and batons out. Only with these weapons were they able to force people off the highway, bit by bit forcing people off the highway. People helped each other recover from the attack and, reorganising just inside the jungle, moved back to face the CRS again. For an hour and a half more than one-hundred people continued in a demonstration on the road at the entrance to the highway, always threatening to take it again.
In Motorway blocked! – The jungle’s answer to Theresa May’s visit to Calais (Calais Migrant Solidarity)