The town of Couvin will welcome its first batch of refugees at the former Belvédère boarding school (purchased by Abssis Ltd in December) from February 1st, revealed Couvin’s alderman, Raymond Douniaux. The alderman was officially told of the arrival of the refugees at a meeting between Fedasil, the owners of the former school, and the alderman, on Tuesday evening. According to the alderman, refugees are expected in Couvin from February 1st, in groups of ten.
“We expect to welcome between 250 and 260 migrants. Our maximum capacity is 270. We looked at accepting a smaller number for reasons of comfort and hygiene, but we were told people would be treated with respect and dignity. Several trades are currently working on site. As well as bedrooms and dormitories, the building offers a downstairs recreation area and five acres of outside space. The premises will be fenced in and a badge will be required for access.”
A public meeting is scheduled for January 19th at 7:00pm, to give neighbours information about the arrivals. Only Couvin residents will be allowed in to avoid potential protests as much as possible.