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Mass eviction exposes tense relationship between Britain and its nomadic Irish Travelers
CRAYS HILL, England (AP) ' Vivien Slattery has lived her whole life ' all 16 days of it ' in a tidy mobile home on a crowded site beside green English fields east of London.
Within days, baby Vivien and more than 200 others will be evicted, the losers in a decade-long battle between local officials and their community of nomadic Irish Travelers that has drawn concern from the United Nations.
The local authority says it's a simple planning issue ' the 86 families lack permission to pitch homes on the land. The Travelers call it ethnic cleansing.
The conflict over the settlement, known as Dale Farm, has raged since 2001. The local authority waged a long legal battle to remove them, which it finally won at Britain's High Court last month. Evictions are due to begin Monday.