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France says plans emergency state extension due to elections

French Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve holds a press conference to announce that the state of emergency will be extended following a cabinet meeting at the Elysee presidential palace in Paris on December 10, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

The French premier says his administration is seeking to prolong until mid-July next year a state of emergency declared across the European country after the deadly 2015 Paris attacks.

Bernard Cazeneuve made the announcement on Saturday, saying that the decision was taken due to next year’s presidential and legislative elections.

Initially imposed in November last year, the state of emergency has already been extended four times as the French government considers the risk of terror attacks to remain high.

The emergency rule was adopted after the terror attacks in and around Paris on November 15, 2015. The assaults, which were claimed by the Daesh Takfiri group, left 130 people dead and 350 more injured.

The current emergency rule is set to expire in mid-January.

French police secure a street in Paris, France, December 2, 2016. (Photo by Reuters)

The French National Assembly and the Senate will debate the proposed extension on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.

The emergency measures give authorities extra powers to place people under house arrest and carry out searches.

However, human rights groups have criticized the measures as a violation of civil rights and fundamental freedoms.

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