Everyone was entitled to it, just to start with the right foot. Before giving them the floor, the organizers of the presidential hearings on migration, which took place this Friday in Paris, wanted to remind each of the speakers that they are here to have a “quality discussion over time on complex topics.” who demand it, as well as respect and intellectual rigor.” A way of emphasizing that this meeting was set up specifically to hear something other than the usual cuts on this flammable topic.
It is good that the candidates, or rather their representatives, because only Yannick Jadot personally came, were there for this. Everyone hailed this space for peaceful speeches, MEP Sylvie Guillaume (on behalf of Anna Hidalgo) solemnly called for “stopping Lépin’s competition for the most violent and most radical solution” on the issue. For the same reason, a team of twenty associations, on the initiative of these hearings, deliberately decided not to invite Eric Zemmour and Marine Le Pen. “It is difficult to talk about inclusion in society with people who want to close the borders and not let anyone in,” Benoit Amon, president of the NGO Singa, justified himself before the start in our columns.
“First we must stop harming the climate”
“Migration is the pollination of human genius. Before it becomes a problem, it is an antidote,” David Robert, from the same NGO as the former presidential candidate, insisted in the introduction. Thus, more humanistic visions followed one another on the platform of a small room located on the ground floor of the National Museum of Immigration History. We will keep the proposal of Yannick Jadot, who wishes, if elected, to initiate an international convention on climate refugees in order to give them a real status. “First we need to stop hurting the climate and then help the people who will pay the first for global warming,” said the environmental candidate, who intends to take asylum and immigration out of the Interior Department. “We cannot approach them from a security point of view,” he argued.
The questions posed to each speaker provided an opportunity to expand on this highly technical topic of migration. There have been several discussions about the “Dublin Regulation”, which requires migrant asylum seekers to apply in the country through which they entered the EU territory (often different from the one in which they are located). Anne Hidalgo supports its removal as it lengthens procedures. Jean-Luc Mélenchon also thinks about it, unlike Valerie Pecresse.
The LR candidate was represented by its campaign manager Patrick Stefanini, former general secretary of the famous Ministry of Immigration, Integration of National Identity under President Nicolas Sarkozy. He defended his two strong ideas in this area: the regulation of immigration by enshrining the principle of immigration quotas in the Constitution and the need for stricter control of the external borders of the EU. “If there is one topic on which there should be a common policy in Europe, it is border control. It needs to be strengthened,” he said, before summarizing his boss’s will as follows: “Cheer less to integrate better. »
Mass regularization of undocumented migrants
Not exactly the position of the Communists, who, with the voice of Stefan Peu, defended the mass legalization of undocumented migrants in order to end the status of “ni-nor”. “There are people who do not have access to refugee status or the right to asylum and who cannot be expelled. They are immersed in a disturbing mystery that creates a whole black economy,” explained the municipal councilor of Saint-Denis (93), referring, in particular, to housing and work. The Insumi, for their part, allow, as in other matters, “European defiance” if necessary to make the voice of France heard. Daniel Obono, sent by Jean-Luc Mélenchon, assured that he would put pressure on his European colleagues, for example by stipulating a French contribution to the budget of Frontex (the Community’s border and coast guard agency). “France cannot fund human rights violations at the borders,” she said.
There was also a lot of talk about temporary protection being activated for Ukrainians. This system, provided by the European directive of 2001, gives the right to the right of residence, access to the labor market, housing, education, social assistance and medical care. It has never been used before, for example for Syrian or Afghan refugees. The organizers note that Marlene Schiappa, a spokesperson for presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron, has put forward the idea of extending some of the provisions set for Ukrainians to “other groups of people” in the future.
The team will make sure that beautiful words are respected. Meanwhile, David Robert concluded with great pride in highlighting the fact that he was able to “talk peacefully on migration for three hours with politicians in France in 2022.” “And this is not an April Fool’s joke,” he added calmly. Well controlled exit.