In the rather dull but twee Pomerainian resort of Heiligendamm (Holy Church?) there has been a meeting of what the FT describe as the G6 interior ministers. (Why all this G10, G8, G7+1 etc? In this case they are referring to the six largest countries in the EU).
It appears that following a suggestion by Sarkozy they are all considering an "integration contract", by which immigrants to those countries would be required to learn the language of the host country or risk expulsion.
Our own ponderous bearded monster Charles Clarke weighed in, saying that, "he supported the move towards an integration contract, initially by asking experts from the G6 to review comparable procedures used in member states. He acknowledged that such an agreement could be used as a check that “new immigrants live up to the values of our society”, with expulsions a possible consequence if they do not".
Which is all very well, but hold on a moment. The problem in Britain is made up largely of recent immigrants from within the EU, mainly from the newer eastern countries. Indeed the figures suggest that 400,000 will have arrived on our shores by the second anniversary of accession at the beginning of May.
I somehow doubt that he will be making these demands of Bulgarians and Romanians when they arrive, nor of Poles and others now.
This is of course all in a line with the governments proposed points system for immigrants from non-EU nations, which will require immigrants from the Commonwealth, who have greater historical and in many cases cultural ties with the UK, but just happen to be coloured, to jump through smaller and higher hoops to gain entry into the UK, whilst eastern Europeans have a free pass.
Make these demands of all immigrants, certainly. Stack the dice against non-Europeans, no way.
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