French religious leaders ask Hollande for increased security

Military presence to hit 10,000, with 4,000 soldiers in Paris

28 July, 10:56

    (ANSAmed) - PARIS, JULY 28 - French religious leaders met on Wednesday with President Hollande to ask for increased security in places of worship, following the attack in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray on Tuesday in which two armed teens claiming allegiance to ISIS took four people hostage and killed 84-year-old Catholic priest Father Jacques Hamel.

    On Tuesday, Hollande spoke with Pope Francis and said France will "do everything to protect our churches and our places of worship".

    French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the country's anti-terrorism operation "Sentinelle" will increase military presence to 10,000 soldiers, 4,000 assigned to Paris and the remaining distributed throughout the province.

    He said more than 23,500 agents from the police, gendarmerie military police, soldiers and reservists will be dispatched overall.

    On Wednesday the country's National Police Inspectorate (IGPN) issued its report on security the night of July 14 attack in Nice, when a lorry plowed into a Bastille Day crowd, leaving 84 people dead and 303 wounded.

    Cazeneuve had ordered the IGPN investigation in a "gesture of transparency and truth for the victims and their families" following accusations of inadequate security.

    The report said that security was adequate, with the presence of 64 national police officers in addition to municipal police, and said accusations of inadequate security were "the result of a poor understanding and interpretation of the facts".(ANSAmed).

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