In a speech before the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, French President Emmanuel Macron reiterated his willingness to reform the “control of migratory flows (and) the protection of the right of asylum.”

In line with the finding corroborated by many polls published in recent years and according to which a majority of the French people wants to limit or even stop immigration, Macron warned that the right of asylum would disappear “if we do not have the courage to face the demand for control expressed by all our fellow citizens; if we do not have the lucidity to see that, in many cases, the asylum application comes from deeply safe countries.”

One would lack lucidity, Macron added, if we omit “that today the asylum application is obviously the object of a circumvention if not a diversion.” In France, as in most Western countries – notably in the United States, immigration has become the center of a recurring political controversy which, without being treated effectively, would encourage the development of populism and far-right movements.

Recently, Emmanuel Macron drew criticism from leftwing parties for having declared that “France cannot welcome everyone if it wants to welcome well.”

Watch Emmanuel Macron’s speech (in French):

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