Temporary home to thousands of migrants trying to reach Britain, the French city of Calais also turns out to be a major battlefield for presidential candidates who are seizing on fears of immigration in campaigning for spring elections.

Former President Nicolas Sarkozy, competing for the conservative primary in November, is visiting Calais on Wednesday, where he's expected to campaign for sending migrants to a processing center in Britain. Sarkozy will not go to the makeshift camp known as the jungle but will instead meet with forces securing the area.

Far-right presidential contender Marine Le Pen has made fighting immigration a longstanding combat, and Sarkozy's rivals for the conservative nomination have also visited Calais. President Francois Hollande is considering going to Calais next week.