Valls Boasts Progress in Immigration

Interior Minister Manuel Valls. Photo: flickr.com/fondapol

Interior Minister Manuel Valls.
Photo: flickr.com/fondapol

Plagued with immigration issues since becoming Minister of the Interior in 2012, Manuel Valls provided a comprehensive review of immigration statistics and reform to the public on Jan. 31, at a press conference at the Place Beauvau, in Paris.

Figures released by the French government show a slight decrease in the number of illegal aliens in France from 2012 to 2013, from 21,800 to 20,800. Responding to criticism from the political right, Valls maintained that the amounts were “spontaneous,” arguing that only numbers enforced by the European Union (EU) had qualitative value.

The minister boasted that the number of forced evictions had increased to 2%. While cheap for the state, evictions have been condemned by the political left as “inefficient” because many foreigners can simply re-enter through Schengen Area member-states, European countries who have abolished passport control along their shared borders.

Another number accounting for the decrease in illegal aliens is an increase in the number of student visas, which rose to 8% of the 58,000 students in French universities last year. This number is considered key to the immigration debate, as many of those on student visas choose to remain in France after graduation to become formally naturalized citizens.

Valls also expressed support of easing the process of naturalization, an effort adopted by the current administration in 2012.  This year saw a 14% rise in naturalization, after a shocking decline of 40% during the last two year’s of former president Nicolas Sarkozy’s term.

Valls closed the press conference by assuring the press and the public that two immigration bills would be tabled by the end of the year, including a bill granting asylum to many of the illegal immigrants in the country.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Valls boasts progress in immigration. Plagued with immigration issues since becoming Minister of the Interior in 2012, Manuel Valls provided a comprehensive review of immigration statistics and reform to the public on Jan. 31, at a press conference at the Place Beauvau, in Paris. Figures released by the French government show a slight decrease in the number of illegal aliens in France from 2012 to 2013, from 21,800 to 20,800. Responding to criticism from the political right, Valls maintained that the amounts were “spontaneous,” arguing that only numbers enforced by the European Union (EU) had qualitative value. […]

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