Authorities in France have opened a 400-bed shelter for refugees in northern Paris, as part of a plan to organize asylum seekers from a slum-like facility in the port city of Calais.
The camp, which was opened Thursday, is designated for single men in particular and is located in a disused railway yard near the French capital’s train station, Gare du Nord.
It will be taking in 50 to 80 people a day, which is the estimated number of refugees that arrive in Paris from Calais on a daily basis.
“The idea is to create a place where every newly arrived migrant can be welcomed and offered dignified, humane shelter,” said Bruno Morel, the head of a charity foundation that runs the center.
Reports said a separate facility for families and women will open in the southeastern suburb of Ivry-sur-Seine in early 2017.
The Calais refugee camp, pejoratively referred to in France as “the jungle,” was dismantled last month, and the French government had promised to secure places to resettle the camp’s residents around the country.
It was home to some 6,000 to 8,000 refugees, including 1,200 children, mainly from Afghanistan, Sudan and Eritrea, living in dire conditions.
The camp had become a symbol of Europe’s struggle to respond to its biggest influx of asylum seekers since World War II.