France extends state of emergency to Nov. 1


France's lower house of parliament, the National Assembly, on Thursday approved an extension of the state of emergency to Nov. 1, the date set by the French president to put it to an end.

Parliament's upper house, the Senate, on Tuesday also voted for an extension past July 15, when it is due to expire.

France introduced the state of emergency in the aftermath of the November 2015 terrorist attacks across Paris which left over 100 people dead.

The state of emergency has since been extended five times. For each extension, civil rights groups have raised concerns and urged its suspension.

Both President Emmanuel Macron and his Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said earlier this week that France would end the measure on Nov. 1 "at the latest," while implementing new security policies.

Interior Minister Gerard Collomb defended the new legislation, telling lawmakers it "will be translated ... into very concrete consequences to continue the fight against terrorism."

"Freedom and security are not mutually exclusive. When you strengthen security, you don't take away civil liberties, you preserve them, and sometimes you enhance them," he said.

Speaking earlier on Thursday to French broadcaster CNews, Collomb said since the start of the year seven terror plots in France have been foiled.

Source: Anadolu Agency