Almost 300 Romanians leave France in immigration crackdown
Two chartered planes carrying almost 300 Romanian nationals left France on Thursday in compliance with the French government's program to expel Roma without valid identity papers, according to the French Ministry of Immigration.
One flight, carrying 113 Roma, departed from Lyon; the other, carrying 157, left from Paris.
The passengers aboard both planes were repatriated voluntarily, accepting financial compensation of 300 euros ($381) per adult and 100 euros ($127) per child.
Almost 8,300 Romanian and Bulgarian nationals have now been expelled from France since the beginning of the year. Close to 10,000 were expelled in 2009.
French officials have said the deportations are part of a broader crackdown on illegal immigration. Additional chartered flights are scheduled for September 14 and 30.
SPECIAL: The Situation in France