Gérald Darmanin

Under-fire French interior minister defends CL cup final policing

France— Link

French interior minister Gérald Darmanin, who has been strongly criticised over the policing arrangements for last Saturday's Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid, when thousands of fans were caught for hours in a mass crush outside the Stade de France, has defended the handling of the event despite numerous complaints of police brutality and inadequate access to the stadium.

Champions League final chaos: France picks up the trophy for incompetence

France— Opinion

The showcase event of European football, the final of the Champions League, was marred by numerous incidents at the Stade de France in the northern suburbs of Paris on Saturday night. Hundreds of Liverpool fans were 'kettled', blocked at the entrance to the stadium, and then tear or pepper gassed by police officers before the club's match with Real Madrid. As Ilyes Ramdani writes in this opinion article, this failure comes on the back of years spent by the French public authorities pursuing a repressive, incompetent and often violent approach to maintaining order at public events.

France urges UK to open legal route for cross-Channel migrants

International— Link

In the wake of the loss of at least 27 lives in the sinking last week of a boat carrying migrants sailing from France to Britain, French interior minister Gérald Darmanin said the British government must 'open up a legal immigration route' because asylum-seekers have 'no other choice' than to cross the Channel in clandestine conditions. 

France says it will not be 'held hostage' to UK over Channel crossings

International— Link

Speaking after a meeting in Calais on Sunday with European counterparts to discuss clandestine migration and people trafficking, following the deaths of at least 27 people trying to cross the Channel to the UK last Wednesday, France's interior minister spoke of the need to cooperate 'seriously' on the issue with London but 'without being held hostage by domestic British politics'.

France calls on UK to ‘pay what it owes’ for policing Channel

France— Link

Interior minister Gérald Darmanin says negotiations should begin for migration treaty between UK and EU.

Catholic Church sex abuse scandal: the French government's double standards over 'separatism'

France— Analysis

For months the French government has continually raised concerns about what it sees as the dangers of “Islamic separatism” in the country and has brought in legislation to tackle it. Yet when in the wake of a major report on child sex abuse in the French Catholic Church a senior bishop suggested that the secrets of the confessional were stronger than the “Republic's laws” there was at first a deafening silence from government ministers. This reluctance to comment came on top of the government's clear embarrassment at the publication of the sex abuse report itself, a document which produced shocking figures on the extent of the scandal in the church. Ellen Salvi reports.

France rebukes bishop who said abuse revealed at confession is 'secret'

France— Link

Following  publication of a report about sexual abuse of children by the clergy, Eric de Moulins-Beaufort said in a radio interview that the secrecy of the confession rite takes precedence over the laws of the republic.

Rape probe against French interior minister Darmanin 'set to be dropped'

France— Link

The investigating judge has closed the inquiry into rape accusations against interior minister Gérald Darmanin and is moving towards a dismissal, according to Mediapart.

French minister claims ‘witch-hunt’ of gendarmerie chief in domestic violence case

France

Following an investigation by Mediapart which revealed how the newly appointed head of the gendarmerie in France’s South Pacific territory of New Caledonia had been convicted of domestic violence, Colonel Éric Steiger was forced to resign his prestigious post last Friday. Despite the public outrage prompted by the case, and notably how the colonel’s hierarchy were well aware of his conviction, French interior minister Gérald Darmanin, in a radio interview on Tuesday morning, denounced a “cabal” against Steiger, who has admitted committing violence against his ex-wife, adding “I am not for witch-hunts”. Matthieu Suc, Pascale Pascariello and Antton Rouget report.

French government presents new measures against domestic violence

France— Link

French interior minister Gérald Darmanin has presented a series of new measures to tackle domestic violence, which last year led to the deaths of 125 people, mostly women, and was the reason for more than 400,000 police call-outs.

How France's shameful deportations help Ramzan Kadyrov's brutal Chechen regime

France— Opinion

In recent months France's interior minister Gérald Darmanin has ordered the expulsion of around a dozen Chechens from the country. This does not just trample over fundamental rights of asylum and the country's commitments under European treaties, says Mediapart's co-founder François Bonnet in this op-ed article. He argues it also means that France is effectively collaborating with Chechen's notorious leader Ramzan Kadyrov, a man accused of overseeing the murder and torture of his opponents.

How French police are laying down the law to the Republic

France— Opinion

The French Republic should not be subject to the demands of the police. Yet this democratic principle is under challenge from the demonstration held by police officers on Wednesday, May 19th. Organisers of the protest in front of the National Assembly in Paris, which was supported by members of the current government, the far right and the two historic parties of the Left, are demanding minimum sentences for anyone found guilty of attacks on police officers. This undermines one of the key principles of the French Republic, that the police force is there to serve all citizens, and not to seek law changes in its own interest or the interests of the government of the day, argue Mediapart's publishing editor Edwy Plenel and political correspondent Ellen Salvi in this op-ed article.

France planning to allow use of algorithms to detect extremism online

France— Link

Presidsent Macron is under pressure to harden terrorism laws amid growing row over security in run-up to election.

The inside story of the 'ultra Left' activists arrested in France over alleged terrorism

France— Investigation

For the first time in a dozen years France's antiterrorist authorities are investigating an alleged terrorist plot by an 'ultra Left' group. In December nine people were arrested at various locations around France. Seven of them were subsequently placed under formal investigation on suspicion of plotting “violent action” against the forces of law and order. Five of them have been held in custody since then. Mediapart's Camille Polloni has spoken to the families and friends of some of those arrested about what they have gone through. Inevitably this new case brings with it reminders of the long-running 'Tarnac affair' in which after a decade of investigations and legal proceedings a group of left-wing activists accused of terrorist acts against French railway lines eventually saw all those charges dismissed.

Council funding of Strasbourg mosque provokes row with French interior minister

France— Investigation

Councillors in Strasbourg have just voted through a 2.5 million euro grant to help build a new mosque in the city in north-east France, a region where unlike the rest of the country the law permits local authorities to fund religious buildings. However, the move by the Green-run council immediately attracted the ire of France's interior minister Gérald Darmanin because the group behind the mosque, Confédération Islamique Milli Görüs (CIMG), is a Franco-Turkish association which has refused to sign the government's new “charter of principles” for Islam in France. The minister, who is championing the government's new law against 'separatism', is now threatening legal action. Report by Guillaume Krempp and Jean-François Gérard of Mediapart's partners in the city, Rue 89 Strasbourg.