France aims to reshape Operation Sentinelle to be more flexible

French Interior Minister Gérard Collomb announced on 22 August that Operation Sentinelle, which was launched after the terrorist attacks in November 2015, will undergo major organisational changes. The specific details will be discussed at a Defence Council meeting on 30 August.

Collomb stated that the deployed security personnel should become more mobile, instead of 7,000 soldiers stationed in fixed positions, there should be 3,500 armed forces members stationed in certain areas and 3,500 mobile soldiers able to fluently move across France when needed. The soldiers will thus be able to provide appropriate security for high-risk events such as festivals or open air gatherings. The French government also plans to increase the number of police officers by more than 10,000, President Macron believes that at least 3,000 new policemen will already be recruited by 2019. Hovewer, the president is criticised for his plan to cut the army budget, despite the fact the army is stretched thin in Operation Sentinelle and was targeted by the latest terrorist attacks in the country. Some of the security measures within the operation were implemented in a draft law, which was passed by the Senate and is going to be voted on by the National Assembly in October.

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