Overseas France – A Laboratory for the “Fight Against Illegal Immigration”

This analysis by the “overseas” collective (which brings together CCFD, Cimade, Collectif Haiti, Comède, Gisti, LDH, Médecins du monde and Secours catholique) refers to the version of the bill presented to the Council of Ministers on March 29. 2006 .

Mayotte, Guyana and Guadeloupe, targets of the immigration bill:

In a very controversial article, the overseas minister, François Baroin, presented an apocalyptic situation six months ago:

“  In Mayotte and Guyana, more than one in four inhabitant is an illegal alien. In Guadeloupe, the number of people from Haiti who applied for asylum rose from 135 in 2003 to 3,682 in 2004. The majority of deportations to the border concern overseas territories. If, in metropolitan France, we had the same rate of illegal immigration, that would make 15 million illegal immigrants on metropolitan soil. You can imagine the possible social tensions  ”.

No need to worry about the economic and historical reasons for migration to Guyana and Mayotte or the right of asylum which should be legitimately recognized for many Haitians, no need to wonder by what arbitrary measures the Overseas France obtains such remoteness rate score. On these distant French lands, the hunt for undocumented migrants can be freed from the common law of the French Republic.

“  A particular situation, a particular policy. (…) A law will come in the next few months to complete [the current system] proceeding to the essential adaptation of our law to these particular situations in particular in Guadeloupe, Martinique and Mayotte  ”. It will be a question of ”  allowing the control of any person  ” in a border zone, of ”  seizing or destroying any vehicle having transported illegals  “, … Target of the nationalist right for two centuries, the right of the soil should not to be spared:

In Mayotte, “  two thirds of mothers are Comorians, and around 80% of them are in an irregular situation. An estimated 15% of these mothers return to the Comoros after giving birth. The situations are different, it is not a question of making a layer. This makes it possible to move the lines, to get out of taboos. The law of the soil should no longer be one .  “

The measures relating to the Overseas Territories announced by the Minister appear to a large extent in the ”  bill relating to immigration and integration »Modifying the code of entry and stay of foreigners and the right to asylum (cited below under the acronym of CESEDA) which will soon be examined by parliamentarians. The outline of this bill is as simple as it is brutal: open the door to “chosen” immigration which is useful to the French economy and close it to “endured” immigration (family, asylum, worker who has become useless. …). Overseas France, where derogatory foreigners’ rights have reigned for a long time, may seem far from these debates. Through speeches dramatizing the “invasion of illegals”,

Index of the role of laboratory of the Overseas: the first of the draft laws on immigration received by our associations, dating from November 2005, concerned only the ”  control of immigration in certain territorial communities located beyond -mer  ”. For Guyana alone, it put an end to the issuance of a “ private and family life ” residence  permit. »To foreigners who have usually resided in France for 10 years. For Mayotte, where the Minister of Overseas Territories had just fantasized about the invasion of French babies of Comorian mothers, he introduced the hunt for “paternity of convenience”. A month later, on December 18, these two measures were extended to all French territory; the first thus appears in the current draft law relating to immigration, while the scope of the second has been restricted (temporarily?) to Mayotte, after having been restricted to Mayotte and Guyana.

Title VI of the bill on immigration “  includes provisions relating to the control of overseas immigration  ”; it concerns Guyana, Guadeloupe and Mayotte. Mayotte was, in 2006, under the heat of the news and – as a result – a privileged laboratory for new legal means of “the fight against illegal immigration”; three recent parliamentary missions, two from the Senate and one from the National Assembly, went there; their reports shed light on the new features of the project and the probable amendment proposals.

The Outre-mer collective presents here the provisions of the bill specific to Guyana, Guadeloupe and Mayotte: exceptional laws relating to the control and removal of migrants and to the sanctions of undocumented foreigners or those who support them; threats to access to French nationality and reinforced procedures for controlling “paternities of convenience”. This analysis is in addition to the analysis on the whole of the bill carried out by the collective “United (s) against disposable immigration”, several extracts of which are cited.

A senatorial commission on illegal immigration supposed to publish its report by April 6 is chaired by the senator of Guyana, Georges Othily. She went to Mayotte in February at a time when the island was the scene of movements and declarations of rare violence against access to work for French people of Comorian origin (whether or not they have dual nationality). , against republican principles. The president of the delegation, interviewed by RFO on February 10, however, had to take the side of the denial of rights: “people who have dual nationality (…) it is a choice that they made and this choice must not be not prevent (the) Mahorais from obtaining the right to work at home ”.

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