French PM knocks Marine Le Pen, Francois Fillon stance on security after Paris attack – French police killed in central Paris on Thursday.
Marine Le Pen, Paris, France, shooting, Paris attack, Bernard Cazeneuve, Francois Fillon, immigration, Francois Hollande, Arc de (Reuters)
Far-right leader and French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen was looking to exploit a shooting in Paris, which killed a policeman, to score political points and divide people, Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said on Friday.
Cazeneuve, a member of France’s Socialist government, took aim at Le Pen’s reaction to the shooting and also singled out conservative candidate Francois Fillon, criticising his record on security when he was prime minister.
Cazeneuve knocked back Le Pen’s call on Friday to reinstate border checks and expel foreigners on intelligence watchlists, saying she had voted against the government security efforts previously.
He said le Pen was seeking “to exploit fear without any shame.” He added that there was nothing in the shooting investigation linking immigration to the incident.
A French policeman was shot dead and two others were wounded in central Paris on Thursday night in an attack carried out days before presidential elections and quickly claimed by the Islamic State militant group.
President Francois Hollande said he was convinced the “cowardly killing” on the Champs Elysees boulevard, in which the assailant was himself shot dead by police, was an act of terrorism.
The wide avenue that leads away from the Arc de Triomphe had been crowded with Parisians and tourists enjoying a spring evening, but police quickly cleared the area, which remained empty well into the night of all but heavily armed security forces and police vehicles.