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Macron wants to “toughen” the rules for the “most dangerous” foreigners

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Nuanced promises. In terms of immigration, Wednesday, October 26, on France 2, Emmanuel Macron sought to defend his action, pledged to deport more people in an irregular situation without promising miracles. The subject of forced removals has come back into the news following the murder, on October 14, in Paris, of a young girl, Lola, for which the main suspect turns out to be an Algerian without papers. who had been subject to an obligation to leave French territory (OQTF) but had no criminal record. The right and the far right have seized on this tragedy to accuse the government of impotence, when, in the first half of 2021, according to the latest figures available, 5.67% of the OQTFs pronounced were executed.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers The executive on the defensive in the face of the recovery of the murder of Lola by the right and the far right

Asked about his 2019 statements in the far-right weekly Current Values – to whom he had said that his objective was to have 100% of the OQTFs issued by the administration executed – the Head of State admitted that the promise was not tenable. “Even those who are not given titles [de séjour], [à qui] we do not confirm their right to stay on the territory, it is very difficult to send them back ”, he said. He insisted on distinguishing “two types of OQTF” : those issued after a refusal of a permit or the rejection of an asylum application to foreigners “that we do not put in prison”, and those issued to foreigners who “disturbing public order”. It is this last category, “those who are the most dangerous”on which the president wants to concentrate the means and achieve 100% execution of removals.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers Low Foreigner Removal Rates: Why OQTFs Are Difficult to Execute

“In two years, we managed to expel 3,000 people who disturbed public order”, argued Mr. Macron, highlighting the policy of the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, who asked the prefects to prioritize the removal of foreign offenders. Asked about the amalgam made by the minister between foreigner and delinquent, the President of the Republic defended himself from any “generalization” and maintained that he “will do[t] never an existential link between immigration and insecurity”. However, he argued that in Paris, “where we have a high concentration of this illegal immigration (…)at least half of the acts of delinquency are the work of foreigners”.

“Simplify procedures”

The head of state has promised reform ” in depth (…) to simplify procedures, on the occasion of the immigration bill, which must be examined ” in the first semester » 2023 and preceded by a debate in Parliament in ” the next weeks “. If Mr. Macron did not expand on the elements that would make up the future text – which will constitute the second immigration law since his first election -, he said in particular that he wanted “tighten the rules” and “accelerate” in particular the examination of asylum applications. Elements of the project have also already been distilled in recent months, such as the extension of the duration of the OQTF, the lowering of the period for voluntary departure or the overhaul of the national court for the right of asylum.

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