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Former Frontex boss Leggeri is running for Le Pen's party

The former head of the EU border protection agency Frontex, Leggeri, is running in the European elections for the party of the French right-wing nationalist Le Pen. He is concerned with stricter immigration rules in the EU, said Leggeri.

The former head of the EU border protection agency Frontex, Fabrice Leggeri, has joined the right-wing populist Rassemblement National (RN) party in France. Leggeri said he was running on the RN list for the European elections in June.

According to surveys, Le Pen's party can hope to do significantly better than President Emmanuel Macron's government camp in the European elections on June 9th.

Stricter Immigration rules in the EU

Together they want to give the French back control over their migration policy and fight for stricter immigration rules in the EU, said the RN and Leggeri.

The party has “a concrete plan and the capacity to implement it,” the 55-year-old told the Sunday newspaper Journal du Dimanche. His main concern is to “combat the migration flood”.

“My goal is to put my experience and expertise at the service of the French,” Leggeri wrote about his candidacy for the European Parliament on the online service X. “After leading Frontex for almost seven years and working for the state for around 30 years “This decision is only logical, especially in the areas of security and migration management,” he added.

Serious allegations against Leggeri

In April 2022, the long-time Frontex boss Leggeri resigned from his position after serious allegations against him and employees. The background was, in particular, investigations into illegal rejections of migrants in the Mediterranean.

Executives at the Warsaw-based agency Frontex are said to have deliberately covered up the fact that Greek border guards were bringing refugees back to the open Mediterranean. Rejections of people seeking protection at the external borders – so-called pushbacks – are illegal under international law.

Non-governmental organizations accuse Frontex of not adequately protecting the rights of refugees. They identified Leggeri as a key contributor to this practice during his time in office.

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