Migrants from Africa and the Middle East, desperate to reach a better life, continue to attempt to cross to France from Italy, where they are increasingly evicted from refugee centres by the country's coalition government of populists and far-right, using the deadly route of Alpine passes for which they are ill-equipped to traverse.
The odyssey of the migrant rescue ship Aquarius offers a new example of the violence of Europe-wide immigration policies, and not only those of the far-right in power in Italy, writes Mediapart co-editor Carine Fouteau. For the migrants onboard the Aquarius, who will eventually arrive in a state of exhaustion in Spain, the ship’s long and deviated route for a safe haven is yet further confirmation that they and others like them are simply considered as a burden by European countries – if, that is, they manage to arrive alive on the continent’s shores.
Prime minister Édouard Philippe has sought to clarify plans after aid and emergency agencies accused government of planning mass expulsions.
President Macron pledges to open centres in Libya by end of summer to process asylum applications, despite doubts of some French officials.
The numbers of people leaving France to live abroad has risen dramatically over the past eight years in comparison to the numbers of those taking up residence in the country, according to a study published this week by the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. The institute also found that immigration now accounts for a relatively small proportion of the growth in the French population. Michel de Pracontal reports.
France and Germany echo UK calls to restrict welfare payments for EU migrants ahead of a predicted influx of Romanian and Bulgarian workers.