As we all know, France fell victim to the largest ever terrorist attack on its territory last November. The city of Paris was targeted by ISIS, and more than 130 people died in the shootings and bombings. For the country, it was a massive crisis because it questioned the entire security system. Everyone was wondering: what should we do now?
For the government, it was very important to react quickly and efficiently. Aside from striking back by bombing ISIS targets in Syria, the government made several domestic reforms in order both to reassure the population and to strengthen the action of the authorities. For example, the state of emergency, which authorizes the executive power (the police) to take action without the consent of the judiciary power (the investigating judges), was declared in the wake of the attacks and recently extended. This means that police officers can legally search houses without warrants. Other laws are also discussed at the Senate, such as revocation of citizenship for people who committed a terrorist attack or a massive crime.
However, the current unrest around security has fostered a new debate: where is the limit between security and freedom? How far are we ready to go in order to ensure “the nation’s safety”? Especially here in France, the land of human rights, this is a crucial question. Protests have ignited across the country; some decry the many laws the government passed directly after the attacks and accuse the government of using the fearful atmosphere to lessen people’s freedom.
by Emma P.