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Sarkozy compares Toulouse shootings to 9/11
15:55 30.03.2012
Day News

Nineteen people have been arrested in a series of police raids on suspected Islamists – CNN reported.

 

The raids come a week after gunman Mohammed Merah, who killed seven people, was shot dead after a long siege in the southwestern city of Toulouse.

 

The arrests took place in Toulouse, Marseille, Nantes, Lyon and the Ile de France region, around Paris, the Interior Ministry said.

 

Authorities have not said that any of those arrested were directly linked to Merah.

Sarkozy told Europe 1 the decision to act had been taken by the interior minister and foreign minister "to deny the entry of certain people to France" who did not share the country's values.

"It's not just linked to Toulouse, it's all over the country, it's in connection with a form of radical Islam and it's in agreement with the law," he said.

 

"What you have to understand is that the traumatic events in Montauban and Toulouse were profound in our country. I don't want to compare horrors but it's a bit like the form of trauma visible in the United States and New York after 9/11. We have to be able to draw some conclusions."

 

Sarkozy said a number of weapons, including Kalashnikov rifles, had been found at properties searched.

 

"There will be other operations that will continue and that will allow us to expel from our national territory a certain number of people who have no reason to be here," he said.

Sarkozy said he was obliged to act to ensure the nation's safety. "It's our duty to guarantee the security of the French people. We have no choice. It's absolutely indispensable."

The Interior Ministry media office said "the police had plans to carry out 19 arrests and therefore 19 arrests were made in connection with the group Forsane Alizza."

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