France’s far-right calls on interior minister to quit
France’s far-right leader has called on Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve to resign, saying the steeply increasing death toll from terrorist attacks in France is clear evidence of the need for changes in the French government.
During a speech on Saturday, two days after the deadly terrorist attack in Nice, French National Front Party Leader Marine Le Pen said, “In any other country in the world, a minister with a toll as horrendous as Bernard Cazeneuve — 250 dead in 18 months — would have quit.”
The French government is facing severe criticism from opposition politicians and newspapers following the Nice attack, the third major terrorist attack on the French soil in 18 months,
Meanwhile, Cazeneuve has defended his country’s security efforts, saying that France was dealing with “a new kind of attack” which highlighted “the extreme difficulty of the anti-terrorism fight.”
He further vowed to bolster security efforts around the country and also called on “all patriotic citizens who wish to do so” to join the country’s operational reservists.
On Friday, French President Francois Hollande called on the French operational reservists, with or without military training, to boost the ranks of the country’s police force.
Earlier, the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group claimed responsibility for a deadly attack in France’s southeastern city of Nice during the country’s national holiday, Bastille Day.
On Thursday night, a truck driver ploughed through a Bastille Day crowd in Nice, killing 84 people and wounding 200 others.
The assailant, who was later shot dead by police, was identified as 31-year-old Franco-Tunisian Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel.
In a Saturday statement, the French health ministry announced that “five children are still in critical condition and one child has stabilized.”
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has declared three days of national mourning following the attack, noting that the government has decided to extend the state of emergency that has been in force in France since the November attacks in Paris until October.