- crime - drug trafficking - France - French politics
Should the army be called in to deal with gang and gun crime?
A Socialist senator calls for the army to be sent to Marseille, but most pundits disagree. Another official says, though, that soft drugs should be legalized so that drug kingpins lose the market, and therefore the hold they have on young people. Also, the Socialist government wants moonlighting ministers to drop the jobs they had when they were elected, and get on with the work at hand.
The French newspapers lead with the fallout from the fatal shooting of a young man in Marseille who was linked to drug trafficking. It was part of the gangland activity that prompted the Socialist Senator and local mayor in the area to call for the army to be sent in, but Le Figaro agrees with the defence and interior ministers that although the area is seeing some of the worst gun crime since 1996, it’s no reason to call in the soldiers.
Libération cites an expert in the field who agrees. The last time the army intervened in France was during the Paris protests in 1961 and 1962 in the final stages of the Algerian War.
Libé also has a story about a curious aspect of French politics – the MPs and Ministers who, after being elected, hold on to the jobs they had as local officials. The Socialist Party ruled that the regional mayors and officials who now work in Paris had to let go of their posts within three months of being elected. But with only a few weeks to go before the deadline, Libé says most of the moonlighting ministers have yet to comply.