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France's President Emmanuel Macron admitted that France has lost the battle against drug trafficking within the growing number of no-go zones in the country.
In a speech for 600 business and political guests in May, Macron called on the local mayors themselves - together with the population - to find suitable solutions, for the problems in France's 1,500 no-go areas or ‘sensitive areas' as France calls them.
Many mayors were struck by Macron's speech. They had expected concrete political guidelines. Macron's proposals are a long way from the ambitious strategy for the sensitive zones that former minister Jean-Louis Borloo had previously developed and published on behalf of Macron.
Instead, Macron passed the buck: not he, but his predecessors have caused today's problems. All solutions designed from above have failed, so they must come from below. He called for a "general mobilisation" of the population, organising itself to save the nation.
In terms of security, Macron called for a "society of vigilance". If you look away, if there are problems in your environment, you become an accomplice. Although this happens sometimes out of fear (in the focal areas), but it is up to the people themselves to set boundaries.
He announced that by 2020, there will be 1,300 additional police officers in 60 sensitive neighbourhoods. Everyone can report problems on a central website. An estimated six million people - about one tenth of the French population live in the 1,500 neighbourhoods that the government classifies as sensitive areas.
Already in 2011, a ground breaking 2,200-page report titled "Suburbs of the Republic", concluded that many French suburbs are becoming "separate Islamic societies" cut off from the French state and where Islamic law is rapidly displacing French civil law.
The authors showed that France - where there are now 6.5 million Muslims (the largest Muslim population in the EU) - faces a major social explosion as a result of the lack of integration of Muslims into French society.
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