The essential French returning from abroad no longer need to have a compelling reason. The State Council suspended this obligation on Friday and classified it as “disproportionate”. However, it remains imposed for the destination of the French West Indies or the return of the French West Indies.
The Council of State suspended the obligation for French returning from abroad to submit “compelling” reasons on Friday, but retained it for travel to or from the French Antilles. “The Council of State considers it disproportionate to ask the French who want to return to France a compelling reason, as the impact of these trips on the spread of the Covid-19 epidemic is small,” he announced in a press release. “The demand for a compelling reason is a disproportionate attack on the fundamental right of all French to access their land,” added the Supreme Court to the administrative code.
On the other hand, the Council of State maintains this obligation for travel to or from the French West Indies, as “this is justified by the desire to avoid the influx of tourists who could worsen the local health situation”.
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France has no access since January 31st
Since January 31st, travelers from a country outside the European Union have been banned from entering France, including the French. They could only enter the area if they could assert a “compelling” family, health or professional reason. On Thursday, the French Foreign Ministry eased some measures for travel to and from seven countries outside the European Union, including the UK, amid already very heavy traffic with the UK variant of Covid-19.
A petition was tabled last month, in particular by the Collectif des Français d’Amérique du Nord and a dozen expatriate representatives of French people, to challenge this measure. The petition quoted an article in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which states that “everyone has the right (…) to return to their country”.
According to the State Department, around 2.5 million French people live abroad, almost half of them in Europe and 20% in America.