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Anti-terrorism law: two mosques closed in 2019

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said on Wednesday that two mosques had been closed in 2019 as part of the Silt anti-terrorism law and that 63 were currently under surveillance, AFP reports.

The minister spoke before the Law Commission of the National Assembly where he made a 2019 assessment of the application of the Silt law of October 2017 which ended the state of emergency.

Christophe Castaner reported on “31 attacks thwarted since January 1, 2017”. “Two places of worship (mosques) were closed, compared to 5 in 2018, under the Silt law,” he said.

He noted that “63 places of worship were currently under intelligence.”

“30 places of worship are subject to closure measures and 7 procedures are underway,” added Mr. Castaner, adding that in these cases other measures than those provided for in the Silt law were implemented, such as safety and health provisions.

“Security perimeters” planned

The temporary establishment of “security perimeters” provided for in the law was particularly used and welcomed by the deputies present.

Individual administrative control measures (Micas), which replace house arrest, were 134 in 2019, up 84% from the previous year. They were concentrated in Ile-de-France (Seine-Saint-Denis, Paris and Val-de-Marne), said the minister.

57% of these measures concerned people leaving prison, convicted of terrorism, or having radicalized in detention.

Another measure provided for in the Silt law: home visits. 107 requests were made by the prefects to the judicial authorities, 78% were approved and 7 people were the subject of criminal proceedings following these visits. “It is a precious tool against the fight against terrorism,” said Christophe Castaner.

Four measures of the Silt law (closure of places of worship, Micas, home visit and security perimeter) are being tested until the end of 2020. Government and legislator, after evaluation, must decide to extend or modify them.

The Republicans, through the voice of rapporteur Eric Ciotti, considered that they should be reinforced, judging that they were less efficient than those of the state of emergency.

Christophe Castaner mentioned “tracks” of proposals that he would make quickly.

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