Fri. Apr 12th, 2024

The IS branch had carried out attempts in France

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A man suspected of taking part in the attack on the outskirts of Moscow is escorted by security forces Russian orders before his pre-trial detention hearing at the Basmanny District Court in Moscow, March 24, 2024.

Agence France-Presse

The Afghan branch of the armed jihadist group Islamic State “involved” in the attack which left 137 dead in the suburbs of Moscow “had carried out several attempts in recent months” in France, French President Emmanuel Macron declared on Monday, the day after raising the country's security plan to its maximum level.

Four months before the Paris Olympic Games (July 26-August 11), the Prime Minister French Gabriel Attal announced Sunday evening to raise the country's security plan to its highest level.

Given […] the threats weighing on our country, we have decided to raise the Vigipirate posture to its highest level: emergency attack, indicated Gabriel Attal on X following a defense council at the Élysée.

Two attack plans have been foiled in France since the start of the year, the Prime Minister announced during a visit to a Parisian station. The Islamist terrorist threat is real, it is strong and it has never weakened, he added.

For his part, Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said Monday that the police, gendarmerie and French intelligence will be ready to ensure security at the Olympic Games in Paris.

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France, because it carries universal values, because it is for secularism […], is particularly threatened, particularly during these extraordinary events that will be the Olympic Games.

A quote from Gérald Darmanin, the French Minister of the Interior

The French government, whose security was already a major concern, wants to show that it takes the threat seriously, while reassuring about its ability to control it.

We must guard against any instrumentalization or distortion, but be demanding and efficient. It is in this spirit that we are moving forward and I hope that Russia will do the same, added the Head of State upon his arrival in the French department of Guyana, while his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin pointed to Ukraine's responsibility.

It would be both cynical and counterproductive for Russia itself and the security of its nationals to use this context to try to turn it against Ukraine, he insisted to the press.

A quote from Emmanuel Macron, the president of France

The Islamic State (IS) armed group claimed responsibility for the attack perpetrated Friday evening against a concert hall near Moscow. Its Afghan branch, the Islamic State – Khorasan Province (IS-K) group, is the prime suspect for global terrorism experts.

This organization was involved in several recent foiled attack plans in several European countries, including Germany, said the head of government's services.

According to Emmanuel Macron, the French intelligence services believe that this entity instigated this attack and carried it out.

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French President Emmanuel Macron attends a press conference on the day of the European Union leaders' summit in Brussels, Belgium, on March 22, 2024.

The executive took note, during a meeting on Sunday evening at the Élysée Palace, that this particular group which is apparently involved in this attack, had carried out in recent months several attempts on our own soil, explained the Head of State.

And therefore, given its ramifications and its intentions, as a precautionary measure, but with credible and solid elements, he decided to raise the national security plan, which had been lowered in January, to its maximum level.

Mr. Macron assured that France had offered the Russian services, as well as our partners in the region, increased cooperation, taking into account the information available to our services and the elements that may be useful to the Russians.

Asked to say whether he himself could speak about it directly with his Russian counterpart, he replied that contacts would initially be made at technical and ministerial level. We will see how the context evolves and whether the coming days or weeks justify it, he added.

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