France is to close its only de-radicalisation centre, after admitting it just doesn’t work.
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The centre, which only opened in February of this year, will be closed after one of its residents was caught attempting to board a flight to Syria and another was sentenced to 4 months in prison for acts of domestic violence.
The Interior Ministry announced that “the experiment has not been conclusive” and therefore the centre would be “closed permanently”.
The centre was supposed to offer education and de-radicalisation schemes to extremist youngsters, which should have been easy, given there are over 17,000 people on France’s terror watch list.
But only 9 people had attended the centre, and “none of them completed the program”, according to the Interior Ministry.
It is estimated that it cost French taxpayer’s €2.5 million to run the centre every year – that’s almost €280K per resident. It was also heavily criticised by locals for allowing the radicals to roam in and out of the town.
One French commenter said it was too late to de-radicalise many youngsters, saying that “we are into the third generation which has been Salafised on our soil,” referring to Salafi Islam, an extremist ideology exported predominantly by Saudi Arabia.
Another said it was yet “another sad illustration of the great naivety of our policies, especially those on the left, which have the excuse of not knowing much about real life”.
It’ll be interesting to see how Roman God Emperor Macron deals with the ever-increasing threat of terrorism in France, but given his penchant for stealing Marine Le Pen’s policies he’s probably hurriedly flicking through her manifesto as we speak.