Contested French Immigration Bill Passes

French lawmakers approved a controversial bill that would institute language and DNA testing for prospective immigrants, hoping to join family members in France. Socialist and Communist party members oppose the bill, citing that it would encourage institutionalizing xenophobia. The bill is part of an overarching plan by Conservative French President Nicolas Sarkozy to implement widespread immigration reform.

Thousands protest France’s DNA immigration law

Thousands of people protested France’s new DNA law, requiring testing for foreigners wishing to join their families. Organizers estimated 3,000 people attended the Paris march, while police put the figure at closer to 1,500. Smaller rallies were held in Marseille, Toulouse, Strasbourg, Nantes, Rennes, and Dijon.

She’s Sarkozy’s voice in French slums

Fadela Amara, a daughter of Algerian migrants, rises as an outspoken, leftist minister of urban affairs in France amidst Nicolas Sarkozy’s controversial comments and proposals relating to immigrants in France. Citing that exploitation is rife, Amara is fighting the proposal to legitimize a French citizenry by requiring immigrants to submit to DNA tests in order to prove they have relatives in France. Amara is encouraging youth from immigrant families and suburban slums to embrace a more inclusionary role in French identity.

France gets new immigration museum as DNA row rages

A new museum in Paris opened this week, celebrating the role of immigration in French history. Hailed by some as France’s “Ellis Island,” the museum opens amidst a controversial proposal by President Nicolas Sarkozy to introduce DNA tests for those seeking immigration to join relatives in France.

Deputies pass voluntary DNA tests for would-be immigrants

PARIS (AFP) – The French National Assembly early Thursday passed a watered-down version of a controversial measure opening the way to DNA testing of would-be immigrants wanting to join their families. The lower house of parliament also adopted the principal measure in a government bill tightening the rules for immigrants: an evaluation in the candidates’ home countries of their knowledge of the French language and the “values of the Republic.” Drawn up by Immigration Minister Brice Hortefeux, the bill imposes new conditions for relatives wishing to join families in France, including knowledge of the French language and proof of financial resources.