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France Passes Bill To Close Mosques Preaching Hatred |The Republican News

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France’s parliament has adopted an anti-terrorism bill that will bolster police surveillance powers and make it easier to close mosques suspected of preaching hatred.

Before the vote, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb described France as being “still in a state of war” as authorities struggle to deal with the threat posed by foreign jihadists and homegrown militants.

Since 2015 more than 240 people have been killed in France in attacks by assailants who pledged allegiance to, or were inspired by, Islamic State.

The latest attack took place on Sunday when suspected Islamist Ahmed Hanachi cried ‘Allahu akbar’ before fatally stabbing two women outside Marseille’s main train station.

Legislators in the lower house adopted the bill by a margin of 415 to 127.

“Lawmakers realise that today’s threat is serious and that we must protect ourselves against terrorists. This must be done in a way that balances security and freedom,” Collomb told reporters after the vote. “This text will help protect French people.”

Emergency powers that were put in place after the Bataclan theatre attack in November 2015 have already played a significant role in enabling intelligence agencies to disrupt plots, according to the French government.

The new legislation would see many of those emergency powers enshrined in law, with limited oversight from the judiciary.

The interior ministry, without approval from a judge, will be able to set up security zones when there is a threat.

Security forces will be able to restrict the movement of people and vehicles in and out of these zones.

They will also have the power to carry out searches inside theses zones.

The interior ministry will have more power to shut down mosques and other places of worship if intelligence agencies believe religious leaders are inciting violence in France or abroad or justifying acts of terrorism.

Police will also have greater powers to raid private property if they have judicial approval, and there will be an increased ability to impose restrictions on people’s movements, including via electronic surveillance tags if they are regarded as a threat to national security.

A parliamentary commission will now seek compromise on amendments put forward by the Senate and Assembly before a second reading and definitive vote, expected in mid-October.

President Emmanuel Macron, painted by rivals as weak on security during his election campaign, has already acted to bolster counter-terrorism efforts, creating a task force in June to improve coordination among France’s multiple intelligence agencies.

The anti-terrorism bill has met little resistance from the public, with people still on edge after the series of Islamist-related attacks, but rights campaigners say it will curb civil liberties.

“France has become so addicted to the state of emergency that it is now injecting several of these abusive measures into ordinary law,” Human Rights Watch said in a statement.

It added that French parliament members had chosen the politics of fear over the protection of hard-won civil liberties and urged parliament and the judiciary to closely monitor how the government uses its new power.

Nonetheless, some conservative opponents of Macron say the draft legislation, which is not as all-encompassing as the state of emergency currently allows, does not go far enough.

“We need to rearm the state,” right-wing lawmaker Eric Ciotti said in a radio interview before the vote. He called for authorities to have greater powers to expel foreigners who threaten public safety. (Mailonline)

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IPOB: France Demands Evidence To Support Nigeria’s Claim |The Republican News

• We’re not aware of  FG’s request to ban group’s radio  – UK

By Emma Emeozor

France has denied knowledge of the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in its territory.

On Wednesday, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed told the press that the financial headquarters of IPOB is in France. “Let me tell you, the financial headquarters is in France, we know, but you see, can you as a government stop sending money to your parents?”

But in a communiqué made available to Daily Sun yesterday, the French Embassy in Abuja expressed surprise over Mohammed’s statement.

The communiqué signed by the Embassy’s Press Officer, Ms Claude Abily read: “The Embassy of France was surprised by the statement made yesterday by the Minister of Information and Culture indicating that the “financial headquarters” of IPOB were in France.

“We don’t have any knowledge of a particular presence of IPOB in France and the Nigerian authorities never got in touch with the Embassy on this point. We stand ready to examine any information which could support this statement.

Furthermore, we would like to reiterate that France actively cooperates with Nigeria in the field of security and that we strongly support the unity of the country.”

The United Kingdom High Commission in Abuja also responded to Daily Sun’s request for its reaction to Mohammed’s remarks regarding Radio Biafra operating from London. The minister had said the UK government was frustrating Nigeria’s effort to halt the operation of IPOB’s internal radio operating from London.

In its response, the High Commission said it was not aware of any representation from the Nigerian government about Radio Biafra.

The statement signed by the Press and Public Affairs Officer, Joe Abuku read:

“The UK is not aware of any representation from the Nigerian government about Radio Biafra. Were we to receive any such request, we would, of course, consider it carefully on the basis of the available evidence, recognizing that freedom of speech and expression carries responsibilities.”     (The Sun)

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190,000 Sign Petition To Stop First Lady Office In France |The Republican News

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                 President-elect Macron; and wife, Brigitte.

More than 190,000 people have expressed their opposition toward French President Emmanuel Macron’s initiative to create an official First Lady status for his wife, Brigitte Macron, as of Monday morning.

The online petition was published on the change.org platform and created by Thierry Paul Valette, the founder of the “national equality” movement.

The organisation’s aim is to combat corruption and discrimination.

The petition specifies that, if enacted, the special status would allow the first lady benefit from the French budget.

Having an office, staff and an allowance from the public purse are examples of some such benefits.

During his presidential campaign, Macron, who took office in May, said that he wanted to create the position for his wife in order to clarify her status, promising that no public funds would be used to pay her.

NAN

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U.S Allies Give Blunt Reviews Of Trump’s Foreign Trip |The Republican News

 

Gregory Korte
US President Donald Trump (front row C) reacts as he stands by (front row from L) Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May, (back row from L Romanian President Klaus Werner Iohannis, Slovakia's President Andrej Kiska and Iceland's Prime Minister Bjarni Benediktsson, during a family picture during the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) summit at the NATO headquarters, in Brussels, on May 25, 2017.© MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images US President Donald Trump (front row C) reacts as he stands by (front row from L) Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban… 

WASHINGTON — President Trump received a largely cordial welcome on the first overseas trip of his presidency. But now that he’s returned to Washington, the foreign leaders he met with are increasingly blunt in their reviews of the American president.

In separate remarks intended mostly for domestic consumption, leaders of Germany, France and Israel all sought to distance themselves from Trump, just days after meeting with the president during his nine-day foreign trip to Saudi Arabia, Israel, Vatican City, Brussels and Italy.

Among the sources of friction: Trump’s reluctance to unreservedly commit to the North Atlantic alliance, his skepticism of a climate change accord signed on to by his predecessor, President Obama, and outreach to Palestinians in pursuit of a Middle East peace agreement.

“It’s clear that in Europe at least, that anti-Trump position plays well domestically,” said Ivo Daalder, a former U.S. ambassador to NATO in the Obama administration. “But the larger issue is that the trip didn’t go well in Europe.”

The dynamic is partly one of Trump’s brash style. “I think what grates on European leaders is the sense that he does not treat them as equals, let alone as allies,” Daalder said. “He approaches them in this confrontational way, in an attempt to constantly get a better deal out of them.”

Trump hasn’t spoken about the trip publicly, avoiding press conferences for the entire journey. But on Twitter, he pronounced the mission a triumph. “Just returned from Europe. Trip was a great success for America. Hard work but big results!” Trump tweeted on Sunday.

The reaction abroad was more cautious:

France: New French President Emmanuel Macron said his now-famous white-knuckled handshake with Trump was a deliberate attempt to demonstrate that he wouldn’t be bullied by the American president. “One must show that you won’t make small concessions, even symbolic ones, but also not over-publicize things, either,” he told the French newspaper Journal du Dimanche“My handshake with him — it wasn’t innocent.”

Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel said Sunday at a Bavarian beer hall that Europe can no longer “fully rely” on its overseas allies. On climate issues, she said, the Group of Seven meeting was “seven against one” — counting the European Union as part of the seven (and the United States as the one). Her chief political rival took umbrage at the way Trump sought to “humiliate” Merkel in Brussels. “I reject with outrage the way this man takes it upon himself to treat the head of our country’s government,” said Martin Schulz, who is challenging Merkel for the chancellorship as an “anti-Trump” candidate. He said Trump was “acting like an autocratic leader.”

United Kingdom: British Prime Minister Theresa May is upset that American intelligence officials leaked information about the Manchester concert bombing to the media. Trump acknowledged that he got an earful from May, tweeting Sunday that she was “very angry” about the leaks. “Gave me full details!”

Israel: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has said Israel has “no better friend” than Trump, appeared to hold the president at arm’s length on Monday. Speaking to members of his conservative Likud party, Netanyahu warned that a Trump-brokered peace negotiation with the Palestinians “comes at a price.” And while he welcomed U.S. support for Israel, he emphasized that “there is no such thing as innocent gifts.”

Palestinian Authority: An Israeli television station reported that Trump shouted at Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, during their meeting in Bethlehem last week yelling, “You tricked me!” and accusing the Palestinian Authority of inciting violence in the West Bank. (The Palestinians denied the report.)

Trump’s trip began in Saudi Arabia with a summit of Muslim Arab leaders — and they’re perhaps the least likely to grumble. After feeling neglected by Obama, the Saudis welcomed a $110 billion arms package and Trump’s more bellicose rhetoric toward mutual enemies like Iran and the Islamic State.

But in Europe, Trump’s “America First” foreign policy appeared to alienate other members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the 68-year-old alliance intended to contain Russia — the country at the center of a growing controversy over ties to Trump aides.

At a ceremony meant to solemnize the collective defense provision of the NATO charter in Brussels, Trump failed to explicitly reassure European allies that the U.S. would come to their aid in the event of an attack. Instead, he renewed his complaints that they were not paying their fair share. (In doing so, he misrepresented the commitment by NATO allies to spend at least 2% of their economies on defense.)

And in Sicily, where leaders of the G-7 economic powers gathered, Trump continued his hard-line stance on climate and trade issues. He reportedly told Merkel that Germany was “bad” or “evil” (depending on the translation) because of its trade imbalance with the United States.

But among Trump supporters, his tough talk to foreign leaders drew raves. Sen. Bob Corker, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he “could not be more pleased” with Trump’s international travels.

“The trip was executed to near perfection and it appears the president has made great progress on the broad range of objectives,” he said after speaking with Trump on Sunday. (USA TODAY)

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Marine Le Pen Steps Down As Leader Of France’s National Front Party

French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen announced Monday she is temporarily stepping down as head of her National Front party with less than two weeks ago before the country chooses its leader in a runoff vote.

The move appears to be a way for Le Pen to embrace a wide range of potential voters ahead of the vote pitting her against Emmanuel Macron, the independent centrist who came in first in Sunday’s first round, The Associated Press reported.

LEFTIST PROTESTERS SPARK VIOLENCE AFTER ELECTION RESULTS ROLL IN

“Tonight, I am no longer the president of the National Front. I am the presidential candidate,” she said on French public television news.

Greg Palkot details the close race in the French presidential campaign© FoxNews.com Greg Palkot details the close race in the French presidential campaign

 

Le Pen has said in the past that she is not a candidate of her party, and made that point when she rolled out her platform in February, saying the measures she was espousing were not her party’s, but her own.

She also has tried to distance herself numerous times from a string of controversial comments by her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, who founded the party before being kicked out in 2015.

Le Pen has worked to bring in voters from the left and right for several years, cleaning up her party’s racist, anti-Semitic image to do so.

(FOX News)

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