Following a sweep of arrests of suspected Islamic militants, French President Nicolas Sarkozy compared the fatal attack outside a Jewish school in Toulouse to the trauma of 9/11.
The trauma was “very deep in our country,” said Sarkozy, who is facing an uphill reelection battle. He added that it was “a bit like the trauma that followed in the U.S. and New York after 9⁄11.”
Police commandos reportedly arrested about 20 people and seized weapons during the Friday morning raids in Toulouse and other cities. Sarkozy promised more action in the weeks ahead.
A BBC report indicated that Friday’s arrests were not directly related to the shootings in Toulose that left four Jews and three soldiers dead.
“The Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Foreign Affairs have taken the decision to forbid a certain number of predators on French soil,” Sarkozy said. “We don’t want people who have values contrary to those of the Republic being invited on French territory.”