DGSI Chief Warns: Ultra-Right Violence Resurging

Nicolas Lerner worries in Le Monde about the trivialization of the use of violence and the temptation to want to impose his ideas through fear or intimidation in the movement of the ultra-right.

The director general of internal security (DGSI), Nicolas Lerner, alerts this Sunday July 9 on “the very worrying resurgence” of the violent actions of the ultra-right since the spring, in an interview with the newspaper Le Monde. “Since the spring, we have witnessed a very worrying resurgence of violent actions or intimidation on the part of the ultra-right, part of which is part of an assumed break with the democratic framework”, underlines the boss of French internal intelligence.

Nicolas Lerner, head of the DGSI since 2018, recalls in particular the attacks against the mayors of Saint-Brevin-les-Pins (Loire-Atlantique), who resigned after the fire at his home, and Callac (Côtes- d’Armor), where the installation of reception centers for asylum seekers (Cada) or refugees was strongly contested by the extreme right. The senior civil servant is worried about “the trivialization of the use of violence and the temptation to want to impose his ideas by fear or intimidation” in the movement of the ultra-right, “strong of about 2000 people”. Ten ultra-right terrorist attack projects have been foiled since 2017, he recalls.

Regarding the movement of the ultra-left, the importation of its “modes of action” on the environmental issue, such as the challenge of the mega-basins in Sainte-Soline or the works of the Lyon-Turin railway line, “is a subject of concern “. “The fight against global warming is a legitimate fight that deserves to be waged with determination. But with the means accepted in democracy”, underlines Nicolas Lerner. He regrets that “this claim constitutes for some a pretext to attack the symbols of the State, the forces of order, what they call the ‘system'”.

However, he does not endorse the term “eco-terrorists” from Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin, explaining that “no action” of a terrorist nature has been committed in the name of the environmental cause in recent years, while by remaining “vigilant” in the face of “ideologies that legitimize and theorize the use of violent action”.

Finally, on the Islamist terrorist risk, the head of the DGSI explains that he is increasingly monitoring “radicalized individuals residing in Europe or Central Asia” invited to take action by “terrorist organizations in Syria and, more and more more, in Afghanistan”. “This is a phenomenon that we have seen growing since last summer and on which, in close collaboration with the DGSE (General Directorate for External Security, editor’s note), we are particularly vigilant,” he insists. In December, two radicalized young people, one of Russian nationality and the other of Tajik nationality, suspected of preparing a violent action on French territory, were thus indicted and imprisoned.

This article is originally published on lefigaro.fr

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