A suburb of Paris has 300,000 illegal immigrants crammed into it, according to a parliamentary report.
Politicians have warned Seine-Saint-Denis, northeast of Paris, could be turned into a “huge ethnic ghetto” within two decades due to the surging numbers.
The report said the suburb – just 6 miles from the Eiffel Tower – is putting a huge strain on public services and creating social tensions.
There are an estimated 135 different nationalities in Saint-Denis, most extremely poor, including an estimated 600,000 Muslims from North African or sub-Saharan African backgrounds, the Daily Mail reported.
The official legal population in Saint-Denis is estimated at 1.5 million.
But the numbers continue to rise, as an estimated 80 migrants arrive in Paris every 24 hours — 550 a week.
After the break-up of the refugee camp in Calais, thousands of migrants moved to suburbs in the capital where charities say hundreds of children are sleeping rough.
Seine-Saint-Denis is popular with immigrants because of its location and efficient transport links, including the railway lines heading toward the North coast, and Britain. It’s also only a few hours from the Channel ports of Calais and Dunkirk.
In May French riot police cleared more than 1,000 migrants and refugees from a makeshift canal in Saint-Denis, where they had been sleeping under bridges.
Rodrigue Koukouendo, from President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist party, and François Cornut-Gentille from the center-Right Republicans, who authored the report, want the government to review France’s ban on gathering data on the ethnic make-up of the population.
They want illegal immigrants entering France to be better monitored and regulated.
They wrote, “To identify urban phenomena of ghettoisation, to explain educational difficulties, to combat discrimination and to adapt the resources of the police and the judiciary to a specific population, the question of establishing so-called ethnic statistics is raised.”
French law currently prohibits the collection of data based on race, ethnicity or religion.
Between 8 and 20 percent of the suburb’s population are not registered with the authorities and many turn to crime or the “black economy” to earn money.
The report says plans must be put in place to tackle poverty, high unemployment and trafficking of people and drugs which is rife in some districts.