A Europe that unites to protect, intervene and save lives is a Europe that has rediscovered the meaning of this fraternity that we placed at its heart. It is a Europe that moves beyond words to act tangibly and show the strength of collective action.

The second key is ensuring our sovereignty, at European level, controlling our borders and preserving our values. The migration crisis is not really a crisis but a longlasting challenge. It has emerged from the profound inequalities of globalization. And Europe is not an island. We are here, and our destiny is bound to that of the Middle East and of Africa. Faced with this challenge, it is once again at European level that we need to act. Only with Europe can we effectively protect our borders, take in those eligible for asylum decently, truly integrate them, and at the same time quickly return those not eligible for such protection.

So long as we leave some of our partners submerged under massive arrivals, without helping them manage their borders; so long as our asylum procedures remain slow and disparate; so long as we are incapable of collectively organizing the return of migrants not eligible for asylum, we will lack both effectiveness and humanity.

In the coming years, Europe will have to accept that its major challenge lies there. And we have only one choice, one alternative: closing in behind our borders, which would be both illusory and ineffective, or the construction of a common area for borders, asylum and migration.

That is why, in the coming year, I would like to see the adoption of the various texts that are being discussed for the reform of our migration policy. I would like a genuine European asylum office to be created that will speed up and harmonize our procedures. I would like us to at last have interconnected databases and secure biometric identification documents, for in France we currently process tens of thousands of asylum applications that our European partners have already refused. I would like a European border police force to gradually be put in place, to ensure rigorous management of borders across Europe and the return of those who cannot stay. And I would like us to finance — in solidarity — a largescale programme to train and integrate refugees, for it is our common duty as Europeans to find a place for refugees who have risked their lives, at home and on their way, and we must not forget that.