07:26 GMT +319 September 2019
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    French Justice Minister Christiane Taubira blowing a kiss as she leaves the Elysee Palace on a bicycle after a meeting in Paris March 13, 2014.

    French Justice Minister Resigns Over Hollande's Emergency Terror Powers

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    Christiane Taubira, the French Justice Minister, has resigned after clashing with President Francois Hollande over his state of emergency powers - due to be extended Wednesday - which she says are "completely useless."

    Hollande declared a state of emergency following the November 13 attacks in Paris in which a group of terrorists killed 130 and injured hundreds more in the name of Daesh, also known as ISIL. The measures including banning public gatherings, house searches and plans to strip French nationality from dual-citizens who are convicted of terrorism.

    Taubira, had previously told the iTele news channel that she was against moves she considered "completely useless" in combating the radicalization of French nationals. Following the announcement of her resignation, she tweeted:

    (Tweet above: "Sometimes you remain in place to resist. Sometimes resisting means you go. To be truthful to yourself, to us. To have the last word in what is ethical and right.") 

    Speaking at the UN's Counter-Terrorism Committee last week she said that the French government itself was to blame for radicalization by closing down schools, libraries and other public services in poor and immigrant-rich areas, which she said had become danger zones for impressionable youths vulnerable to radicalization.

    "Terrorism is not elsewhere it's everywhere. It spreads in fragmented societies where the economic and social fabric is being destroyed by poverty. People feel excluded. People who are going through a difficult moment in life and don't feel that anybody's concerned about them, that they are marginalized, that they don't belong to society…"

    "We need to concentrate on education and health. Reducing misery and inequality […] will enable us to combat terrorism, because if we're able to ensure that hope comes back, that people see that there's a tomorrow, that they can get justice, then we will be able to dissipate this terror," she said.

    She said the emergency measure — which include random house searches and the ban on gatherings — went against basic French principles and would not in any case prevent another attack.

    "We mustn't renounce the rule of law, our values, individual and collective freedoms, or public freedoms. If we declare war, it's a semantic and ethical trap because it suggests that we have the same goals and ambitions as the other side."

    Fundamental Freedoms at Risk

    Her comments were applauded by human rights groups, including a group of United Nations experts who last week warned that the current state of emergency in France and the country's law on surveillance of electronic communications impose excessive and disproportionate restrictions on fundamental freedoms.

    "As France debates the strengthening of measures in the fight against terrorism, and considers a reform of the criminal procedure, we call on the authorities to revise the provisions and possible reforms adopted to that end, to ensure they comply with international human rights law," the UN experts said in a statement.


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    State of Emergency, terror threat, terror attack, radicalization, society, terrorism, human rights, counterterrorism, Paris Attacks, November 13, 2015 Paris terrorist attacks, United Nations, Francois Hollande, Europe, France
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