The French National Assembly passed a bill over the weekend that shortens application deadlines for asylum-seekers and doubles the current detention timeline for failed asylum-seekers awaiting deportation. Pres. Emmanuel Macron's centrist party says the law will speed up the asylum claims process.
Pres. Macron called the "geopolitical conflicts" facing Africa, such as "great poverty," wars, and its surging population, a "ticking bomb" that will spur on a wave of migration from Africa into Europe "for many years to come" in a BFMTV interview on Sunday.
"The migratory phenomenon we are facing will be historic," Macron said. "We cannot take on the misery of the world."
The bill would reduce the application deadline for asylum-seekers from 120 days to 90 days and limit the appeal period for rejected claims to two weeks. The legislation also allows law enforcement to detain failed asylum-seekers from a 45-day period to a 90-day period and mandates a one-year prison sentence for foreign nationals who enter the country illegally. Additionally, it allows for the holding of family units awaiting deportation.
With an "unprecedented" number of foreign nationals pouring into the country, the large majority of French citizens say they want significantly less immigration. According to a BVA poll released in February, 63 percent of French voters said that there are too many immigrants in France -- about 6 million foreign-born people.
The French House passed the bill 228 to 139 and is scheduled for debate in the French Senate this June.