- Title: France launches interactive digital campaign to halt radicalisation
- Date: 18th November 2016
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (NOVEMBER 18, 2016) (AGENCY POOL) VALLS SITTING WITH INTERIOR MINISTER BERNARD CAZENEUVE (TO HIS LEFT) AND JUSTICE MINISTER JEAN-JACQUES URVOAS (TO HIS RIGHT) (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRIME MINISTER, MANUEL VALLS, SAYING: "We are going to ask parliament, as I said just a moment ago, to prolong the state of emergency. We are currently working on it, there are still several meetings between ministers. The vice president of the State Council, Jean-Marc Sauvé is right and we have always considered it this way: we cannot indefinitely prolong the state of emergency, but what is true is that terrorism is here, and the threat is serious." CAZENEUVE SPEAKING / NEWS CONFERENCE ENDS
- Embargoed: 3rd December 2016 12:33
- Keywords: Manuel Valls Islamist jihadism #ToujoursLeChoix
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE AND INTERNET
- City: PARIS, FRANCE AND INTERNET
- Country: France
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,International/National Security
- Reuters ID: LVA00558Z1MPZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The French government launched on Friday (November 18) a new campaign aimed at discouraging potential jihadists from joining Islamist fighting groups in Syria and Iraq, and said departures of fighters for the region seem to be on the decrease.
The government counted 18 French people arriving in Syria or Iraq in the first semester of 2016, down from 69 in the second semester of 2015. They have counted 12 who returned, versus 25 from the same two periods.
The new digital campaign, entitled #toujourslechoix.fr (which means "always the choice") is composed of interactive videos, from the point of view of two youth who are on the path of radicalisation and exposed to the process of recruitment until the point of being asked to travel to Iraq or Syria.
The audio-video campaign will be broadcast across television and stations and social media networks.
"We must shatter the propaganda, reveal this deadly scheme, which takes the form of a moldy neo-romanticism, which perverts particularly the minds around a project - a political project, a religious project - that is very dangerous, even deadly," Valls said.
He added that it was important to engage in defeating a real battle of cultures.
"In this way, we want to provoke an electroshock averting the radicalisation of youth by making them move out of the virtual world in which they are in, into reality," Valls said.
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said departures for Syria or Iraq have decreased in 2016, attributing it to prohibiting certain people from leaving France and improved collaboration with Turkey.
Nearly 400 people have been arrested since the beginning of the year, due to suspected links with jihadist groups.
Close to 12,000 people have been signaled to authorities as being radicalised, among which 5,700 were reported to a public hotline.
President Francois Hollande announced on Tuesday (November 15) that he wished to prolong the state of emergency until the presidential election in May, due to the security threat. The measure was put in place after the November 13 attacks in Paris, and has been extended four times.
Valls said that while the state of emergency cannot be indefinitely prolonged, he emphasised that the threat of attacks was present and serious.
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