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Migrants refuse relocation from $280/night NYC hotel; NYPD clears encampment near Hell's Kitchen
Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Migrants refuse relocation from $280/night NYC hotel; NYPD clears encampment near Hell's Kitchen

Police were dispatched to the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan Sunday night when a group of migrants housed in a hotel there refused relocation to a Brooklyn shelter.

"This weekend, we began the process of moving single adults[sic] males form the Watson Hotel to Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, as we transition the hotel to meet the large number of asylum seeking families with children," said New York City Mayor Eric Adams in a statement obtained by Fox 5 NY.

"The facilities at Brooklyn Cruise Terminal will provide the same services as every other humanitarian relief center in the city," the statement also said.

More than 50 migrants protested the move to the Brooklyn facility, setting up camp outside the hotel Sunday night, according to the National Review. Some of the migrants visited the new shelter, but returned to the hotel after finding conditions there unsatisfactory, the outlet also reported.

One of Sunday's protesters described the facility as an "icebox" with "hundreds of cots in warehouse-like rooms, few bathrooms, and little heat," according to a report published at W42St.com.

The NYPD cleared the migrants' tents from blocking the sidewalk along 57th Street on Monday around 11 a.m., ABC 7 NY reported.

A Twitter user documenting part of the scene last night, described it as a "mini-riot," and shared a brief video. The video shows a crowd gathered in front of the Watson Hotel along with a number of police officers, emergency vehicles, and a bus.

"The former residents pounded on the [Watson Hotel's] door and pressed their faces against the glass, yelling 'Open!' as security guards and staff watched on from the inside," according to the Villager, which posted several photographs of the chaotic scene.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced the opening of a fifth "Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Center" at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal on January 21, 2023. In that announcement, he noted that the facility "will provide approximately 1,000 asylum seekers with a place to stay, access support, and get to their final destination."

"Since this humanitarian crisis began, the city has taken fast and urgent action. . .opening 77 hotels as emergency shelters and four other humanitarian relief centers already, standing up navigation centers to connect asylum seekers with critical resources, enrolling children in public schools through Project Open Arms, and more," the statement concluded.

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