A centre for asylum seekers is to be opened on 1 January in Jambes, Namur Province, the Red Cross indicated on Wednesday, confirming an announcement by RTL Info. Some 250 places will be available at first, but the aim is to increase that number to 500.
The opening of the new centre comes in response to an increased demand for accommodation for persons seeking asylum. “Currently the occupancy rate of the other structures in Belgium is almost 100%,” said Renaud Mommaerts, operations director of the Red Cross section that deals with the reception of asylum-seekers. “It’s Fedasil [Federal Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers – Editor’s note] that proposed this site to us and it corresponds fully to what we are looking for.”
Up until late 2018, the Jambes Barracks was occupied by the Defence Department, which still owns it. The final details for the handover of the premises are to be completed in the next few days.
A public meeting will be organised soon to inform area residents, the Red Cross stated. It added that a committee would be set up to ensure a good cohabitation between the asylum seekers and the local population.