Sputnik: Has France's counter-terrorism strategy essentially failed?
Helen Fenwick: I don't know whether I would say that in general, they've failed; they seem to have stopped some attacks, but obviously what happened in Strasbourg suggests that there was some kind of failure of information.
In this case; I think it's possible that there was a failure. Obviously; as we all know, the security services can't be mounting twenty-four-hour surveillance or using other measures against every single terrorism suspect they have, they have to downgrade or upgrade suspects all the time in terms of risk, because of lack of resources.
Nevertheless; in this case, given that he was known to be radicalised, known to be a member of an extremist group in Strasbourg, then it does seem as though there may have been intelligence failures.
Sputnik: Is terrorism more of a problem in France than the rest of Europe?
Helen Fenwick: It seems to have yes; I think that that is possible. France has taken stronger measures and continued them longer than other countries in Europe, and it seems as though it's got a particular problem with certain groups that are operating in certain cities, which are to some extent known to the authorities.
It does seem to have a greater problem than a number of other countries in Europe, and it's the only country recently; aside from Turkey, to seek a delegation from the UN convention on human rights which has now ceased, but nevertheless, that was the response, not surprisingly to the Paris attacks.
There does appear to be some evidence that they are in a difficult situation regarding the threat situation.
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