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Refugees Deeply is designed to help you understand the complex web of geopolitical, human rights, environmental, legal and other factors combining to make the refugee issue one of the most challenging of our lifetimes. Our editors and expert contributors are working around the clock to bring you greater clarity and comprehensive coverage.

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Executive Summary for August 1st

We review the latest refugee-related issues, including a French high court’s ruling that Calais migrants have the right to water and sanitation facilities, the launch of UNHCR’s “Help” website for refugees in Turkey and thousands fleeing Boko Haram violence in Niger.

Published on Aug. 1, 2017 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

French Government to Provide Water and Sanitation to Calais Migrants

Migrants and refugees in the northern port of Calais have the right to access water, showers and toilets, according to a ruling by France’s highest administrative court. The court also ordered the government to “stop the unlawful treatment of foreigners.”

The Council of State rejected an appeal filed by the government against an earlier order requiring that water and sanitation facilities be installed in the area, arguing that depriving migrants in this way “exposed them to inhuman and degrading treatment, dealing a serious and clearly illegal blow to a basic right.”

The announcement comes less than a year after authorities dismantled “the Jungle,” a makeshift camp in Calais that housed an estimated 10,000 migrants. Around 350–400 migrants have returned to the area since then.

As part of measures designed to improve the living conditions of asylum seekers, the government announced that two new reception centers will be built in Bailleul and Troisvaux, about an hour from the coast.

UNHCR Launches Multilingual ‘Help’ Website for Refugees in Turkey

The U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR) launched a new website this week to provide guidance to refugees living in Turkey about their rights, available services and obligations.

“Help,” available in Arabic, Farsi, Turkish and English, allows “both the Syrian and non-Syrian population to reach information across a range of themes asked most by asylum seekers and refugees, from registration and refugee status determination procedures to education and livelihoods,” according to UNHCR.

“Through this new website, UNHCR will increase its outreach and communication with refugees. The site will provide them with a portal for up-to-date information relevant to them, their families and their communities, and help them to share the information in a timely and accessible way,” said interim UNHCR representative Paolo Artini.

Turkey currently hosts the largest number of refugees in the world, with more than 3 million registered Syrian refugees and 300,000 from other countries.

Thousands Fleeing Boko Haram in Niger Enter Chad

At least 7,000 people fled to Chad from Niger over the last week, with thousands expected to follow, according to UNHCR.

The civilians were fleeing attacks by Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

Recently arrived refugees said they fled Niger due to fear and direct threats after Boko Haram attacked their villages in the southeastern Diffa region, UNHCR official Edward O’Dwyer told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“They also said they felt exposed after Chad scaled back the number of troops in Niger due to a lack of resources,” he added.

The security situation in southern Niger could push at least 10,000 more people to flee to Chad, according to U.N. estimates.

Fighting between Boko Haram and Niger’s army has intensified in Diffa over the past year. Some 20,000 people have been killed and at least 2.7 million people from Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria displaced by the insurgency, which spans the Lake Chad region.

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