OPINION

The rights of legal foreigners

We need to differentiate between the serious question of illegal immigration, on the one hand, and, on the other, the crucial issue concerning the rights of foreigners who live legally in this country.

Clamping down on illegal immigration, imposing law and order in urban centers and raising a fence to stop the flux of people sneaking across the border in the Evros region are all key policy measures.

That said, the battle on illegal migration must not affect the lives and rights of people that were once migrants and who are now legal residents of this country — people who have sent their children to Greek universities and who care about the well-being of this country as much as any other Greek citizen.

These people have made a contribution to Greece and we ought to do our best to integrate them into Greek society while keeping to strict rules over matters such as the granting of Greek nationality or voting rights. We should make no concessions to illegal migrants but we should maintain a mature and responsible stance toward those who live and work in this country legally.