in Marseilles, Darmanin announces a reinforcement of 300 police officers by way of “catching up” – Liberation
The parade has been tested and approved by generations of interior ministers: a nice announcement of reinforcement of staff before a trip to the region helps dilute the difficulties on the ground in the thanks. Gérald Darmanin has not deviated from tradition: for his first visit to Marseille since his installation at Place Beauvau, it is the hood weighted with 300 new police officers for the department – precisely 100 per year from this year – that he arrived this Thursday afternoon in the premises of the North Division of the city for a visit dedicated to the strategy of fight against drug trafficking. A gift that should calm people down a bit, after the spat between the minister and the Marseille municipality last week about video surveillance. On February 16 on RTL, Gérald Darmanin launched hostilities by declaring that the socialist mayor of Marseille, Benoît Payan, had “refuse” the money he had offered to develop the facilities in the city. “Until proven otherwise, a camera has never stopped any thief, let alone drug trafficking”, had returned to him in the wake of the assistant to security Yannick Ohanessian, asking the minister instead to be concerned about sending troops there … which Gérald Darmanin agreed to do the same evening, by announcing on Twitter his next arrival “In this beautiful city” from Marseille. To believe that it was enough to ask.
Yannick Ohanessian was present this Thursday alongside a delegation of elected officials to accompany the minister on his courtesy visit to the police forces who, for the occasion, had also prepared a welcome gift for him. In the courtyard of the northern police station, on tables, the different units had chosen to exhibit some beautiful pieces illustrating their daily work. Weapons, including heavy ones, seized in particular during raids on drug traffickers, motorcycles used in particular for urban rodeos, cartridges of contraband cigarettes … And most impressive, the narcotics stand: heaps of cannabis resin and other cocaine vials, sometimes carefully packaged by dealers in trendy packaging. Enough to make a floating smell float in the air … “There is something for 500,000 euros on the table”, said a policeman behind the table. A panel details: “Cannabis resin – 35 kilos; grass – 15 kilos; cocaine – 4kg250. “ That is what the northern division picked up in just a week in the townships of the neighborhood, plagued by trafficking. According to figures revealed this week by Provence, Marseille would have 156 “Stupid plans”.“Of which 60 identified in the north of the city”, complete a policeman behind the stand this Thursday.
“I’m waiting to see the acts”
Reinforcements will therefore not be too much. “They have already started to arrive since yesterday, more than ten staff arrived in this district and will extend mainly until May since they are out of police school”, Gérald Darmanin said at the end of his “round table”, acknowledging that“In Marseille there was an understaffing and in particular of public security, we are repairing it”. “It’s just a catching-up of what Marseille has undergone, especially with the non-replacement of retired staff, Yannick Ohanessian adds as the minister walks away. Obviously I’m satisfied, but I’m waiting to see the deeds: if I understood correctly, it is a departmental deployment. How many will be in Marseille? And at what position?»
Not yet convinced, the security assistant, especially as the minister put a layer on the CCTV cameras, indicating that the state is ready to financially help the city to equip itself to the tune of a million euros: “For the police to be more effective, they have all told us, we need image resources as in all the cities of France”, insisted the minister. “I have so many police officers who explain to me that it does not solve a large majority of problems! Either we say that it can be a tool and why not, but put cameras to put cameras, how far we go? Marseille already has 1,600!» returns the security assistant, who recalls that the new majority has for the moment decided on a moratorium on the subject, to reflect on the usefulness of the existing cameras and their location before going further – or not. The match should continue tomorrow with the mayor of Marseille, whom Gérald Darmanin must meet before continuing his departmental trip to Arles and Rognac.
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