Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

France Ambassadors Conference: Hollande outlines foreign policy priorities (part 2)

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Somalia: Car bomb outside presidential palace kills at least 10

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Socialists complain of Macron's 'betrayal' of Hollande

Read more

THE DEBATE

France Ambassadors Conference: Hollande outlines foreign policy priorities (part 1)

Read more

FOCUS

Video: Meeting US inmates as Obama pushes for criminal justice reform

Read more

REPORTERS

From the archives: Caught in the crossfire in Colombia

Read more

ENCORE!

Video: Harlan Coben on suspense, suburbia and success

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Democratic Republic of Congo: Inside Camp Garlic, a stronghold of ADF militia

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Rousseff defends her track record

Read more

France

Thousands rally in Paris over extending state of emergency

© ALAIN JOCARD, AFP I People holding a banner reading "State of emergency, deprivation of citizenship, no!" during a demonstration on January 30, 2016 at the Place de la Republique in Paris

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-01-31

Thousands of people marched through Paris on Saturday to decry the proposed extension of a state of emergency imposed after the November Paris attacks.

Braving driving rain and shouting slogans including “state of emergency—police state” the marchers protested loudly against a measure they see as curbing human rights.

Police put participation at 5,000 while organisers said some 20,000 people took part.

Several other cities including Toulouse in the south held smaller-scale marches organised by unions, human rights organisations and other pressure groups.

A further gripe is a government plan to strip convicted French-born terrorists of their citizenship if they have a second nationality.

That proposal has already triggered the resignation of Justice Minister Christiane Taubira who stood down in protest over the plan this week after the reforms were presented to parliament.

Parliament is due in the coming days to debate the state of emergency as President Francois Hollande seeks parliamentary approval to extend the current three-month measure, which expires on February 26.

The Senate is to vote on the proposal on February 9, followed by a vote in the National Assembly on February 16.

'There are enough laws already to fight terrorism'

Concern has been growing about the state of emergency, introduced after coordinated gun and bomb attacks left 130 dead in Paris on November 13.

France’s highest administrative court on Wednesday refused to lift the state of emergency.

The Council of State ruled that the “imminent danger justifying the state of emergency has not disappeared, given the ongoing terrorist threat and the risk of attacks.”

But UN human rights experts last week said the measures placed what they saw as “excessive and disproportionate” restrictions on key rights.

Saturday’s protesters demanded an end to the state of emergency and the nationality proposal, measures they say “strike at our freedom in the name of hypothetical security.”

Marchers said they fear an open-ended state of emergency.

“Until when? The end of Daesh (Islamic State)? Ten years? Never?” asked one woman, who gave her name as Chris, while another, Camille, said she feared that France is “experiencing a permanent coup d’etat.”

Despite the popular concern, a recent poll showed 70 percent of French people back maintaining the state of emergency.

(AFP)
 

Date created : 2016-01-30

  • FRANCE

    Top French court rejects suspending state of emergency

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Hollande seeks to extend state of emergency despite critics

    Read more

  • IN THE FRENCH PAPERS

    'Emergency, Equality, Fraternity'

    Read more

COMMENT(S)