French government sends Commission information on citizens’ rights.
● France vows to comply with EU law
The European Commission confirmed on Friday (15 October) that it had received documents from the French authorities on the application of EU law on free movement.
The French government said on Friday that it had told the Commission it would fully implement EU law on free movement of citizens. “French authorities are willing to insert certain provisions of the (2004) directive into national law texts,” said a statement issued by the foreign ministry.
It added that the French government had sent the “necessary information” to the Commission to show that it would “fully comply with European law”.
The Commission had given France until 15 October to present its plans or face legal action at the European Court of Justice. It decided on 29 September to threaten legal action after an investigation into the expulsion of thousands of Roma to Bulgaria and Romania found that France had not properly implemented EU rules.
Viviane Reding, the European commissioner for justice, had called the expulsions “a disgrace”, warning they had probably violated EU free movement and discrimination rules. A second investigation, into whether France violated European discrimination rules, is still ongoing.
The Commission said that rights and safeguards offered by the EU free movement legislation were not “fully effective and transparent” in French national law. At issue were guarantees in the law that are supposed to give citizens a right to appeal against expulsions in national courts.
Eric Besson, France’s immigration minister, said on Wednesday (13 October) that France would ensure it complied with EU law by amending its national immigration legislation. He said the government would aim to have the changes debated by the parliament by the end of this year.