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The first immigration police in Europe is being created in France


In the beginning of next year an immigration police will start working in France. This new organ will relentlessly fight the infiltration into France of the so-called non-legals. So far the creation of such a police only existed in remote plans of the French authorities. Yet the sad events in London and the constant terrorist threat to attack Europe again convinced Paris that such a step is necessary.

To be fair it must be said that Frances immigration policy has always been tough. It is the only country in the EU with quotas on the number of new immigrants. This means that the amount of foreigners that are allowed to settle in France per year is strictly limited. There are no concrete numbers, but it is not a secret that basically only those foreigners that the French economy needs are admitted, for example, doctors, programmers and engineers. A special commission defines the suitability of immigrants - by test scores achieved in French language and by the usefulness of their professions. For those who do not pass, the country is closed.

There is also a special Committee for Migration, which sorts out and exiles illegal immigrants from France. Another plan of the French authorities that will be realized soon is the abolishment of automatic French citizenship given to people who marry a French citizen. Moreover, a list of dangerous countries, whose citizens can be granted political asylum or the status of refugee, will be worked out. This means that citizens of countries that are not on that list will not have the right to enter France as a refugee or under any other political shelter.

So far, analysts have linked these severities with the consequences of the enlargement of the EU. In this way France closes its borders to the wave of cheap labor from Eastern European countries that have entered the EU. The last months have shown, however, that unemployed Polish sanitary technicians are not the only thing that is to be feared. Specialists from the European Institute RAN are of the opinion that the toughening of the migration policy is mainly linked with the fear of becoming the next target of terrorists. The French president Jacques Chirac admitted, after the events in London, that nobody in Europe is safe from terrorism. As a result, security measures have been strengthened, at the borders everbodys documents are checked and soon the immigration police will start working. It will take shape by the end of this year, and at the beginning of next year it will take up its duties. It will be made up of 300 officers, who will tightly cooperate with the border police and the local city authorities. Then main task of the immigration police will be the exposure of underground networks which organize the illegal arrival and placement of immigrants in France. According to the French Ministry of the Interior, such networks are active in the whole country. Mainly due to these networks, France has been flooded with illegal immigrants from Asia, the Near East, Africa and also from poor regions of Europe. The total number amounts to 200,000 - 400,000 people. Last year more than 16,000 were forced to return to their home land. Next year, with the help of the new immigration police, the authorities plan to send home about 23,000 of the uninvited guests

[16.08.2005]

Source: Novye Izvestiya

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