A European court backs 3 migrants, rules against France

PARIS (AP) — The European Court of Human Rights ruled on Thursday that France violated the rights of three asylum-seekers who lived for months on the streets with no means to meet basic needs such as food, housing and health care.

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The court considered that the three migrants — an Afghan, a Russian, and an Iranian — “have been victims of a degrading treatment reflecting a lack of respect for their dignity.”

France is “responsible for the conditions in which they lived for months in the street ... with permanent fear of being attacked and robbed,” the court said in a statement, noting the “absence of adequate response” from authorities.

The court ordered France to pay fines ranging from 10,000 to 12,400 euros ($11,280 to $13,986) to each of the three migrants.

The European court has ruled several times against France on its treatment of migrants, saying the country is in breach of Europe’s human rights convention forbidding inhuman or degrading treatment.

In February 2019, the court ordered France to pay 15,000 euros ($17,000) to an Afghan migrant for failing to protect him when, as a 12-year-old, he lived alone in a makeshift migrant camp in Calais, in northern France.