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Race bias claim at holiday venues

Clubs and campsites in the Alpes-Maritimes tell north Africans they are full before allowing whites inside

AN UNDERCOVER operation by an anti-racism group has exposed racism at some bars and clubs on campsites in the south of France.

SOS Racisme found two campsites and three clubs in the Alpes-Maritimes, out of a total of around 20 establishments tested, turned away ethnic minorities before allowing whites inside.

The organisation has named Le Camp du Pylône in Antibes Juan-les-Pins and Le Green Park at Cagnes-sur-mer as campsites which discriminated between the two young men of north African origin and two young white men sent to try and stay there.

Both establishments deny the accusations. A spokesman for Green Park told the site 20 Minutes that there was no basis for the allegations and that SOS Racisme "hears what it wants to hear."

A spokesman for Camp du Pylône said they were surprised. "We didn't think that could happen here, among our employees we have all nationalities," they added.

Three clubs, L’Annexe and Le Carré in Saint-Laurent-du-Var and La Siesta at Antibes were also named.

The president of SOS Racisme Dominique Sopo told 20 Minutes that they had video and sound recordings of the incidents.

While the north African men were turned away from clubs because they were "reserved for regulars", "too young" or they were "about to close", the white men were allowed in soon afterwards without any problems, said Mr Sopo.

"At the height of the holiday season, this operation on the Côte d'Azur show us once again that holidays are not the same for everyone," said a statement by SOS Racisme.

"This test points the finger at unequal access to facilities and the urgency for politicians to take measures to stop these practices which divide society," added the statement.

The group has said it will take court action against the five establishments and added that local authorities already had the power to close them due to their discriminatory actions.

"In a context of increasingly racist rhetoric and the attempt to close [anti-racism watchdog] the Halde, it is imperative that we use all our legal means to put an end to this and bring prosecutions," said the group.

Photo: DWP - Fotolia.com

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