PARIS– After appearing visibly shattered on Friday evening, France President Francois Hollande delivered a surprisingly bullish speech on Monday before the French congress, vowing to destroy ISIS and calling for tougher laws to fight terrorists on the ground.
Three days after the coordinated attacks that killed 129 people and severely injured hundreds in Paris, the Socialist President said France will launch more strikes in Syria, which he calls “the biggest factory of terrorists the world has known.”
He also called for more systematic controls within Europe and pleaded for an extension of the State of Emergency for a duration of three months. The measure was created in 1955, amid the Algerian Way for Independence, and hasn’t been used since then. Hollande also wants to toughen the State of Emergency law in order to include the right to proceed to residential confinement and raids.
Hollande also called for increased security spending with the creation of 5,000 police jobs; as well a reform to an article of the constitution which pertains to the government’s handling of imminent peril, armed insurrection and foreign attack. “We are at war, and this war of another kind calls for a constitutional regime allowing us to wrestle a crisis,” said Hollande.
Gaul’s President also wants to strip away the French nationality from citizens who are accused of terrorism – if they have a double nationality — and facilitate their expulsion from France.
Hollande argued it was “not a war of civilisations because these murderers represent none,” and pointed out that the attacks killed people from 19 different nationalities.
Hollande’s call for tougher laws was applauded by many but stirred controversy among some who fear his suggested changes to the constitution play into the Far-Right’s agenda.
With the presidential election coming up in 2017, many people in France fear the Charlie Hebdo’s, Friday’s Paris attacks and migrant crisis will benefit Marine Le Pen, the Far-Right candidate.
On the other hand, Hollande has been supported by those who underlined the urge to shake things up in France in order to ensure a greater national security as well as prevent the spread of ISIS in France and the indoctrination of French youths. Indeed, off of the five identified terrorists involved in the Nov. 17 attacks, four are French — ISIS has been more successful at recruiting in France than anywhere else in Europe for years, according to The Economist.
Hollande will be meeting U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin in the next few days to set up a meeting at the U.N.’s security council.