FRANCE

Valls urges European Union to limit migrant numbers

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls at the National Assembly in Paris, 19 November 2015.
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls at the National Assembly in Paris, 19 November 2015. Reuters/Charles Platiau/Files

According to German daily Suddeutsche Zeitung, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls urged on Tuesday the European Union to limit the number of migrants in its bloc because of threats of Jihadism.

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“Europe must say that it can no longer accommodate so many migrants, it is not possible,” Valls said during a lunch with foreign media in Berlin.

“Controlling the European Union’s external borders is essential to the future of the EU,” he added. “If we don’t do that, people will say: ‘Enough, Europe!’ ”.

His comment comes just ahead of French President François Hollande’s meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday afternoon over EU coordination in the fight against the Islamic State organisation.

Valls however did not criticise the German Chancellor, spearhead of a policy for welcoming migrants through Europe. “Germany has taken an honourable decision” to open its doors to refugees, he added.

According to French police, two killers of the Paris attacks have seized the opportunity of the migrant flux to travel through Europe and reach Paris, Valls noted to justify his firm position over the current migration crisis.

“Europe must find ways to ensure that migrants are dealt with in the countries neighbouring Syria. Otherwise, Europe’s ability to effectively control its borders is called into question,” he added.

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The European Union agreed last week to reform the passport-free Schengen zone by the end of the year and work on a scheme to collect data on air passengers.

France announced on Tuesday it will step up efforts with its border controls and will install security gates at train stations in Paris and Lille for the Thalys cross-Europe railway by 20 December.

About 8,000 police forces are to carry out French borders checks in the wake of the 13 November terrorist attacks in Paris as well as for the climate summit in Paris.

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