France

Morocco Bans Publications Reprinting French Cartoons

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Sunday 11 January 2015 – 07:28

Morocco Bans Publications Reprinting French Cartoons

rabat – Morocco banned the distribution of foreign newspapers that have reprinted Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons of the Prophet Mohamed.

Mustapha El Khalfi, Minister of Communications and Spokesperson of the Government said on Saturday that the government had rejected to offer distribution licenses to some foreign newspapers and magazines that had reprinted the offending cartoons, previously printed by the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. Read the rest of this entry »

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New jihad appeal makes policing even harder

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Soldiers patrol at the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. Frenchman Herve Gourdel, 55,  was abducted in Algeria on Monday by a splinter group from al-Qaida's North African branch. The Jund al-Khilafah, or Soldiers of the Caliphate, said it would kill him unless France halts it airstrikes in Iraq within 24 hours. French forces on Friday joined the U.S. in carrying out airstrikes against extremists who have overrun large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

PARIS (AP) — The Islamic State group’s call on Muslims to go after the “filthy French” and other Westerners multiplies already deep security concerns in nations targeting the militant organization.

The appeal made public Monday makes intelligence tracking of potential suspects virtually impossible and opens up Muslims in the West to the possibility of being unfairly put under suspicion or stigmatized.

Nations are honing mechanisms to monitor Westerners who head to Syria and Iraq to fight in the jihad, the better to catch them when they return home with deadly skills. But how do you track someone who reads the Islamic State group’s call in a newspaper or on a mainstream website, and then carries out a spontaneous attack? Read the rest of this entry »

Euro-Atlantic Approaches to Security – Reconciling NATO and the EU

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19 June 2014

US Secretary of State Kerry meets with EU High Representative Ashton, courtesy of U.S. Department of State/wikimedia commons
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Is there a single approach to Euro-Atlantic security? If not, is that a bad thing? Heather Conley’s answer is ‘no’ to both questions. But that doesn’t mean NATO and the EU shouldn’t be talking to each other about complementarity, regionalization and, most importantly, future defense spending.

By Heather Conley for Europe’s World

This article was originally published as ‘Is it Fair to Say there is no Euro-Atlantic Security Approach?’ by Europe’s World on 16 May 2014.

Russian government and military actions over the past several weeks have dramatically changed Europe’s security landscape and fundamentally challenged Europe’s political order for the first time since the Cold War. And to address this task, NATO is the organisation of (only) choice. The problem is that there is no single Euro-Atlantic security approach. The Atlantic has two very different security providers: NATO and the European Union (in the form of the EU’s Common Security and Defense Policy or CSDP).

The EU’s security vision as articulated by CSDP has been adrift for many reasons. Although the CSDP was initially an attempt by some European leaders to be a counter-weight to U.S. defence policy, the de minimis results of CSDP thus far suggest that there exists little policy or budget enthusiasm to create – much less sustain – a robust European defence policy. Today, European defence policy is either expressed within a NATO framework or has been directed at bilateral security interests such as France’s operations in Mali and the Central African Republic. Of the 20 CSDP operations between 2003 and 2008, most missions were geographically located in Africa. Recent CSDP missions since 2012 have been civilian and very small in nature, focused nearly exclusively on training. The CSDP, as currently designed, is not able to defend Europe. Read the rest of this entry »

Terrorists and Europe’s “Newspeak”

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French Navy Joins Mediterranean Anti-Terrorism Operations – War On Terror News

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Sunday, November 13, 2011

French ship commandant birot by David Taylor NATO

NISIDA, Naples – Unpredictable and intense periods of maritime operations aimed at disrupting any attempt by terrorists to maneuver in the Mediterranean Sea are one of the tools employed by NATO to help deter, defend, disrupt and protect against terrorism. Known as Deterrent Surges, these operations involve NATO assets converging on defined areas for a pre-planned period of time so as to deter terrorists but also to build and extend the Alliance’s Maritime Situational Awareness of the area.

Beginning Nov. 12 NATO will concentrate assets in the Eastern Mediterranean for more than a week’s intense patrolling:

“The backbone of this Surge is the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 and maritime air reconnaissance. To this we are adding ships made available specifically for this operation,” said Captain Olivier Bodhuin Chief of Operations at Headquarters Maritime Command, Naples. Read the rest of this entry »

European rights official attacks burka bans

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Agence France-Presse July 20, 2011

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Banning the burka and niqab in public places threatens to exclude women, not liberate them, a top European human rights official said Wednesday.

Photograph by: Gonzalo Fuentes, Reuters

STRASBOURG – Banning the burka and niqab in public places threatens to exclude women, not liberate them, a top European human rights official said Wednesday.

And letting a relatively minor problem become such a major issue was a “sad capitulation” to xenophobia, Council of Europe human rights commissioner Thomas Hammarberg added.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Islamic veil across Europe

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Page last updated at 12:12 GMT, Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Countries across the continent have wrestled with the issue of the Muslim veil – in various forms such as the body-covering burka and the niqab, which covers the face apart from the eyes. The debate takes in religious freedom, female equality, secular traditions and even fears of terrorism.

FRANCE

Headscarves are allowed at French universities – but not schools

France has for years been debating whether to ban the “full veil”.

In early 2010 President Nicolas Sarkozy said it was “not welcome” in France.

This was followed by a French parliamentary committee recommending a partial ban, saying that veils covering the face were an affront to French values and proposing they be banned from inside public buildings – such as hospitals and schools – and public transport. Read the rest of this entry »