Gérald Darmanin wants to reorganize the distribution between police and gendarmerie on the territory

The Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, October 20, 2020. – Stephane Lemouton-POOL

Not an upheaval, but adjustments. This is what the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, recommends concerning the territorial distribution between the police and the gendarmerie, among other axes of the white paper on internal security to come. The Minister spoke on the subject
in an interview with the Parisian published Saturday evening.

To sum it up, the gendarmerie operates in rural areas and the police in cities. On the one hand, “it is out of the question to touch our model, which sees two complementary forces acting”, assures the minister. But “there is a bad distribution between the police and the gendarmerie at the national level,” he notes. “The agglomerations have expanded”, continues Gérald Darmanin by way of example, so that “in the Toulouse metropolitan area, there are four towns under the authority of the police, and all the rest of the area, very urbanized, under the control of the gendarmerie ”. He adds: “It is necessary without taboo to move towards a more efficient organization”, by evoking the notion of “basin of delinquency like those around the public transport or the highways”.

The minister also pleads for increased cooperation between the gendarmerie and the police in “the maintenance of order”, “the technical and scientific police (PTS) or Cyber”. In any case, he rules out a fusion of the two forces which would be, according to him, “a disastrous error”.

“You have to make your real cop job attractive”

Concerning the police, the minister announces the creation of a “single departmental direction in each department”, which will have under his orders “the public security, the border police and the judicial police”. This new organization will be implemented “from the beginning of next year in three metropolitan departments: Pas-de-Calais, Savoie and Pyrénées-Orientales”, explains the tenant of Beauvau, stressing that “two of these three “border” departments are experiencing immigration-related difficulties. The experiment will last a year before the system is generalized if it is successful.

Finally, the minister advocates “stronger modernization in certain areas such as that of investigation”. “Today, there are 3,000 judicial police officers (OPJ) who no longer carry out investigative work, while paradoxically, we are lacking. It’s a bit of a crazy system. It is necessary to make its attractiveness to the real job of cop, that of the investigation ”.

Answers in the coming days

The white paper on security, initiated by Gérald Darmanin’s predecessor, Christophe Castaner, and his Secretary of State Laurent Nunez, required a year of work and discussions between the government, the major police and gendarmerie bodies. and trade unions.

The document is expected to be released in the next few days.

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