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French parliament rejects bid to cancel accord with Algeria

French President Emmanuel Macron   -  
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LUDOVIC MARIN/AFP or licensors


The French parliament on Thursday voted down a proposal calling for the termination of the Franco-Algerian agreement, which makes it easier for Algerian nationals to immigrate to France

Submitted by the rightwing Republican party with the backing of the far-right camp, the motion was defeated with 151 votes against it. 114 deputies backed the proposal.

Staunchly anti-immigration, the Republicans accuse President Emmnauel Macron of being too soft on the issue.

"As long as this agreement exists, there will be a derogatory regime that escapes the law. It has already been revised 3 times without the principles on which it is based ever being called into question. That's why The Republicans group (of MPs, ed.) wants to go further and that's why we purely and simply want to reject this agreement," said Michele Tabarot, MP for conservative party The Republicans during a speech in the National Assembly on Thursday.

The failure of the proposal came just days before parliament starts debating a key bill on immigration.

Signed in 1968, the accord confers a special status on Algerians in terms of movement, residence and employment in France. 

Ties between Paris and Algiers have endured episodes of strain in recent years over issues such as immigration, trade contracts and France's colonial legacy.

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