As I reported earlier today, Belgian police officials are concerned about the possible arrival of members of the Taliban mixed with the refugees from Afghanistan. In France, however, it has already occurred: French intelligence services have identified newly-arrived members of the Taliban.
Five Afghans repatriated to France placed under surveillance due to their presumed connections with the Taliban
by Jean-Marc LeClerc and Steve Tenre
August 23, 2021
One of the individuals admitted belonging to the movement and acknowledged carrying weapons as person-in-charge of a Taliban roadblock at Kabul.
Several repatriated Afghans in France have been placed under surveillance by French authorities, Le Figaro learned on Monday, August 23. The cause: Their alleged closeness to the Taliban fundamentalist movement, which invaded Kabul on August 15. Five men have thus been made the object of an “individual measure of administrative control and surveillance (Micas),” stated Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin.
The cases of two men brought to the attention of Le Figaro particularly drew the attention of the surveillance services: Nangialay S., born in 1995 at Logar, some 100 kilometers from Kabul, and Ahmad M., born in 1991 in the Afghan capital. According to orders issued by the Interior Ministry, the first one, Nangialay S., admitted belonging to the Taliban and also acknowledged carrying arms as person-in-charge of a roadblock at Kabul. He reportedly also “largely aided in the evacuation of the French embassy,” explained Gerald Darmanin to Agence France Presse. The second, Ahmad M., was seen in connection with the Islamic movement, carrying a weapon in the streets of the city.
The two individuals, for whom there “exists serious reasons to think that their behavior constitutes a threat of a particular gravity for security and public order,” have been integrated with the two other Afghan nationals also “marked for their connections with the Taliban movement,” during a French repatriation operation taking place on August18. As of August 23, almost 2,000 persons have been taken in by France, according to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian. As for the fifth man, “After an investigation by DGSI, we saw that he had connections with these persons, though they came separately,” detailed Gerald Darmanin.
Those concerned, who must be “regarded as being habitually in contact with persons or organizations who are inciting, facilitating, or participating in acts of terrorism,” have thus been placed under individual measures of administrative control and surveillance.
Police checks and limited movements
In this context, Ahmad M., isolated for ten days in a hotel residence of a Paris suburb as provided by health measures, is required to present himself every day to the police, “who will go to his domicile to assure themselves of his presence.” His movements will be limited to his municipality of residence — though he could ask for a written authorization to leave. A violation of these measures, in effect for three months, exposes the person to a maximum punishment of three months’ imprisonment and a €45,000 fine.
As the law authorizes, the alleged terrorist, at the administrative level, has the possibility of “presenting written or oral observations within a maximum period of eight days from the notification of the present decree.” The oral observations will be formulated to the prefect of the competent department. In addition, the decree by Gerald Darmanin “could be the object of an appeal for excess of power before the competent administrative tribunal within a maximum period of two months from his notification.”
Interior is now required to surveil these individuals within the framework of the law. A lot of energy and resources will have to be deployed to avoid a new blunder in this matter, already heavily criticized by leading opposition leaders.
“The government must explain to the French people what would prevent the expulsion of these individuals as a matter of absolute urgency,” Xavier Bertrand, right-wing candidate for the presidency, reacted on Twitter. “The law must be adapted to the needs of our security. Not the reverse.” “The ‘duty’ of France to welcome takes second seat when the security of French people is threatened. This imperative makes sense except for… the government!” tweeted Marine Le Pen for her part [RN, Rassemblement National].
Tweet by Xavier Bertrand: “Five Afghans connected to the Taliban under administrative anti-terrorist surveillance. The government must explain to the French people what would prevent the expulsion of these individuals as a matter of absolute urgency. The law must adapt to the needs of our security. Not the reverse.”