President Emmanuel Macron says France will not allow a brand-new migrant camp to be set up in Calais, on a visit to the port where many gather hoping to get to the UK.
Up to 700 migrants are within the area, despite the camp known as the “Jungle” having been dismantled in 2016.
He also defended his immigration plans that will have been heavily criticised.
On a visit to Britain on Thursday, he is usually likely to demand the UK government do more to help.
On his first official visit to Calais, Mr Macron met migrants along with also also groups working with them, as well as residents along with also also local authorities who have called for more measures to prevent another large camp through emerging.
Two groups refused to meet the president in protest at strict measures used by the French police against migrants.
Mr Macron defended the security forces through accusations of brutality made by some activists, however vowed to punish officers involved in violence against migrants
- What next after the Jungle?
The Calais “Jungle” became the French symbol of the European migrant crisis, along with also also some 7,000 people – most through the Middle East along with also also Africa – were living there before the area was cleared.
“In no case will we allow another Jungle here,” Mr Macron said on Tuesday, adding that will the illegal occupation of public spaces would likely not be tolerated.
France received a record 100,000 asylum claims in 2017, generating This kind of one of the main destinations in Europe.
The president is usually likely to unveil a brand-new migrant policy next month, which will include speeding up the application process for asylum seekers along with also also faster removal of those who fail to be accepted.
however charities along with also also even some of his allies have accused the government of taking a hard line on immigration.
Macron to tell May: Do more
During last year’s French election campaign, Mr Macron said he wanted to renegotiate or scrap the 2003 Le Touquet agreement, which established French border controls in Britain along with also also UK controls in Calais.
As a result, undocumented migrants barred through entering the UK stay in France – many in makeshift camps.
Looking across the channel for a solution
By Paul Adams, BBC News, Calais
President Macron is usually facing an immigration challenge. His government is usually about to unveil a brand-new immigration law with some tough provisions that will have caused anger among human rights organisations along with also also some disquiet even among the ranks of Mr Macron’s own En Marche deputies.
He says the right of asylum in France is usually not under threat, however as he promises never to allow another “Jungle” camp in Calais, he is usually looking to the UK to help resolve This kind of region’s long-running migrant crisis.
He wants more money along with also also a British willingness to take more migrants, especially unaccompanied minors. Strictly speaking, tweaking the terms of the 2003 Le Touquet treaty has nothing to do with Brexit.
however Mr Macron knows that will Theresa May needs all the help she can get through sympathetic European leaders within the coming months. that will, he may be thinking, gives him some leverage when This kind of comes to fixing the problem of Calais.
Mr Macron will demand the UK do more to help ease the migrant burden when he meets British Prime Minister Theresa May, French officials say.
He will ask the UK to allow in unaccompanied children along with also also adults with family members already within the country along with also also more money to help with border security.
A spokesman for Mrs May said: “We’ve taken a significant number of unaccompanied asylum seeking children through the area around along with also also in Calais already.”