PARIS — President Nicolas Sarkozy says that he will pull France out of Europe’s border-free travel zone next year if it doesn’t fight harder against illegal immigration — and if he’s re-elected.
Sarkozy, in a campaign speech Saturday, said members should give the Schengen zone a president and new governing body, and punish member countries that don’t respect its rules.
If this doesn’t happen within a year, he said, “France will assume its responsibilities and leave Schengen.”
Sarkozy has taken a hard-line on immigration throughout his career and especially during his campaign for elections in April and May.
The Schengen zone makes it easier for citizens to travel between its 25 member countries. Some complain that it has also made it easier for illegal immigrants to cross borders.
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