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France stands firm on Roma expulsions

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France stands firm on Roma expulsions


France has refused to stop its controversial deportation of Roma despite calls for an ‘immediate suspension’ by the European parliament.

Almost 1000 migrants have been repatriated since last month.

In Bucharest, to discuss better ways to integrate Roma in Romania, France’s immigration minister dismissed Strasburg’s demand.

“First of all I want to make it clear that it is out of the question for France to suspend the expulsions of illegal immigrants back to their countries of origin. The EU parliament deserves respect, but here it has strayed out of bounds and we will of course not submit to a political dictat,” French Immigration Minister Eric Besson said.

Yesterday, 337 MEPs to 245 voted for a resolution demanding Paris immediately halt its controversial crackdown, launched by French president Nicolas Sarkozy in July.

Tabled by the parliament’s centre-left, green and liberal parties, they also called on the European Commission and EU governments to do more to integrate Roma.

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