France plans to prolong emergency rules

Paris, Dec 11 (IANS) The French government proposed to extend the state of emergency which was put in place since the attacks in November 2015, for a further seven months to guarantee security at the 2017 presidential and parliamentary elections, Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said on Saturday.

“Continued terrorist threat makes (state of emergency) extension necessary,” Xinhua quoted Cazeneuve as saying.

The French Prime Minister added emergency rules helped foil 17 terror attacks, arrest 517 suspects and seize 600 weapons so far this year.

The measure which offers extra powers to police to search homes, hold suspects and put people under house arrest, will run until July 15 to ensure calmness during the two-round presidential race in April 23 and May 7 and parliamentary election scheduled for June 11 and 18.

Gunmen stormed restaurants, coffees shops, theatre hall and stadium in central Paris, killing about 130 people in November 2015. French President Francois Hollande declared a state of emergency a day after the Paris attacks.

Four extensions of the measure have taken place since. It is set to expire on January 15.

–IANS

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