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France's PM Valls unveils new €40 million plan to fight radicalisation

FRANCE 24 | Screen grab of French Prime Minister Manuel Valls as he unveiled his new anti-terrorism plan on May 9, 2016

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls unveiled his new anti-terrorism plan on Monday, which will bolster resources over the next two years to combat radicalisation.

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“Each era has its challenges. The fight against jihad is undoubtedly the big challenge of our generation,” Valls said at a press conference in Paris.

The prime minister outlined 30 existing and 50 new measures as part of his plan, which he described as a “global strategy”.

Under Valls's plan, the government will establish rehabilitation centres for victims of radicalisation in each of the country’s regions by the end of 2017.

“The first centre with long-term housing for individuals who have been radicalized … will open this summer,” Valls said. “The first occupants may be people who have repented, who have already proven to us their sincere desire to be rehabilitated in the long term.”

The plan will also double the number of resources available to those who seek support against radicalisation from the state, of which there are currently 1,600 young people and 800 families in France.

Overall, it will cost the government an additional €40 million ($45.5 million) in funding by 2018.

The new measures come after a tragic year in France, during which a total of 147 people were killed in a series of attacks in and around Paris by Islamist gunmen in January and November 2015.

Most of the perpetrators of the attacks were French citizens who had become radicalised before travelling abroad to fight alongside jihadist groups.

Around 2,000 people in France are believed to be involved with radicalisation or other aspects of jihadist recruitment, according to official figures.

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