Fight against terrorism/Mali
Pretoria, November 21, 2015
Q. – Can you go back over a bit what you said about Mali? Is this going to change France’s strategy?
THE MINISTER – Well, what happened in Mali should obviously be put in the context of international terrorism, and we’ve extended our deepest condolences to the Malian President, the Malian people and all the bereaved. There are no French casualties, but there are many casualties of different nationalities: Russians, Chinese, Belgians – in short, many nationalities.
As you know, through various channels France ensures a presence to fight against terrorism throughout the region, and we’re going to continue this. As you no doubt remember, we prevented the whole of Mali being taken by terrorists; this was the risk in 2013. And we repelled the terrorists, we ensured that there could be a very free election and that there was the possibility of economic development. But a number of terrorists remain in the region, and there has been tragic proof of this. It is essential that not just France, not just the region’s powers but all those who can, cooperate in fighting terrorism because – as I was saying to one of your colleagues – when you look at the major challenges of the 21st century, two of these major challenges are the fight against climate disruption and the fight against terrorism.
I was recently at the G20, and was struck by the fact that the leaders of the world’s 20 most powerful countries, so to speak, all repeated that no one is safe from terrorism. It is an evil that must be fought, and that must be fought by coordinating all our forces. (…)./.