Marine Le Pen Promises Immigration Referendum if She Becomes President in 2022
© REUTERS / Charles PlatiauMarine Le Pen of France's far-right National Front (FN) political party at the opening session of the French National Assembly in Paris, France, June 27, 2017
© REUTERS / Charles Platiau
French Government Spokesman Gabriel Attal earlier said that France will cut the number of visas for nationals from Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia over the lack of cooperation from these countries' authorities in issuing passes necessary for the return of migrants expelled from France.
French right-wing politician and National Rally Party President Marine Le Pen recently said that if she becomes president of France in 2022 she will call a national referendum in a bid to severely limit immigration.
Speaking on France 2 TV, Le Pen said she wants to make it harder for people to enter the country and acquire French citizenship.
“The referendum will propose a complete draft bill that will aim to drastically regulate immigration."
Referendums are allowed under French law but they rarely happen. The last major referendum was in 2005 when the French voted to approve the European Constitution.
Le Pen is the National Rally Party's candidate in the presidential vote set for April 2022. This will be her third presidential bid after the 2011 and 2017 campaigns – during the latter, she advanced to the second round but was eventually defeated by incumbent President Emmanuel Macron.
4 July, 08:58 GMT
In the wake of Le Pen's remarks about a referendum on immigration, Attal said on Tuesday that France will reduce the number of visas available to nationals from Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria by nearly a third because their governments have been refusing to accept illegal migrants sent home by the French authorities.
"It's a decision that is made necessary as these countries do not accept back nationals whom we do not want and cannot keep in France," Attal said in an interview with French Europe 1 radio.