How Macron is waging his secret wars

INVESTIGATION – Since his election, the President has launched increasingly offensive military operations and authorizes serial “neutralizations”. Our collaborator Vincent Nouzille investigated this top secret facet of presidential action.

By Vincent Nouzille

Emmanuel Macron, May 14, 2019, during the tribute ceremony to the two special forces soldiers who died on May 10 during an operation in Burkina Faso.
Emmanuel Macron, May 14, 2019, during the tribute ceremony to the two special forces soldiers who died on May 10 during an operation in Burkina Faso. Jacques Witt / SIPA

It was a summery, but chilling defense council. On August 11, 2020, from Fort Brégançon, President Emmanuel Macron meets by videoconference with his Prime Minister Jean Castex, the royal ministers, the chief of staff of the armed forces and the bosses of the intelligence services. The agenda is serious, mourning the murder, on August 9, of eight people, two Nigerians and six French members of the NGO Acted, in the Kouré reserve, near Niamey, in Niger. A real massacre committed by men arriving on motorcycles.

Until now, this area still seemed protected from repeated attacks by jihadist groups who have spread their guerrillas in several countries of the Sahel. The 5,100 French soldiers of Operation Barkhane have increased for six months the lightning operations aimed at weakening the two main rival nebulae, the GSIM (Support Group for Islam and Muslims), linked to al-Qaida, and the EIGS (Islamic State in the Great Sahara), affiliated with Daesh, in particular

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What IC doctors do differently in the second wave –

The second wave of corona is different from the first wave of March, when we had to deal with a completely unknown virus and it turned out that we had far too few ic beds. IC doctors explain to RTL Nieuws what has now been improved.

Firstly, there is more space in intensive care. In the Jeroen Bosch Hospital in Den Bosch, for example, 20 beds are now available instead of 14 and it is possible to scale up to 26. Logistics and other processes have also been improved. But more importantly, better treatment is possible.

“We now know that we need to do good research into coagulation disorders in the blood, which can lead to pulmonary embolisms,” says IC doctor Peter de Jager, head of intensive care at the Jeroen Bosch Hospital. “Much more is also known about ventilation techniques, which allow patients to leave the IC more quickly. Moreover, we now know that it is good to administer anti-inflammatory drugs at an early stage. ”

Marco Knook, IC doctor at the Reinier de Graaf hospital in Delft explains that patients receive the drug dexametasone. “We see that they respond well to that, which means they can get off the ventilator more quickly. As a result, they don’t have to stay on the IC for as long. We already give the patients dexametasone before they end up on the IC. ”

“In percentage terms, fewer patients will go to the ic, because we can treat the consequences of the virus better,” says De Jager. But he warns: “The virus has not diminished in strength, corona is still hitting just as hard as in the beginning.”

Bron (nen): RTL News


Belgium relaxes the rules and bets on the support of the population

While national figures show an acceleration in contamination since the start of the school year, the Belgian authorities are adopting a strategy that goes against the French turn of the screw.

From October 1, wearing a mask outside in the Brussels region will only be compulsory in high-traffic areas.
From October 1, wearing a mask outside in the Brussels region will only be compulsory in high-traffic areas. YVES HERMAN/REUTERS

Correspondent in Brussels

In Belgium too, the authorities have often groped about the virus. But, at 1is October, it is a turn of one hundred and eighty degrees which awaits the population. Against the grain of the French turn of the screw.

While national figures show an acceleration of contaminations since the start of the school year and even more in recent days, while the country has since Wednesday been classified “red” by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, against “dark orange »Previously, Belgium will considerably relax anti-coronavirus measures. Including in Brussels and Antwerp, particularly affected. The Prime Minister, Sophie Wilmès, moreover set the tone, Wednesday, during her press conference: “The virus is still there, but life must go on!”

The objective of the Belgian authorities is to increase adherence to the rules and to make the population more responsible. “The current measures are so strict that less and less

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dissidents start a party abroad

Opposition figures, based in North America and Europe, want to “establish democracy” in Riyadh.

“We are launching this party at a critical time to save our country, establish a democratic future and meet the aspirations of our people”, Explique Yahya Assiri (
here in 2019 in Istanbul), defender of human rights and secretary general of the National Assembly Party.
Serhat Cagdas / Anadolu Agency via AFP

It is a challenge to the authority of the young Crown Prince Mohammed Ben Salman. While the latter, de facto ruler of the Saudi kingdom due to the great age of his father, King Salman, strives to silence any dissonant voice inside Arabia, a group of dissidents in exile have created the first opposition party. The announcement on Wednesday coincided with the celebration of the 90e anniversary of the founding of the kingdom, an absolute monarchy that tolerates no political opposition. “The National Assembly Party aims to establish democracy as a form of government in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”, said the dissidents in a statement.

The new formation is led by London-based human rights defender Yahya Assiri, and includes academic Madawi al-Rashid, researcher Saïd Ben Nasser al-Ghmadi, activist Ahmed al-Mshikhs, Abdallah al-Awda, son of an imprisoned preacher, living in the United States, and Oman Abdel Aziz,

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15% of severe forms explained by genetic and immune abnormalities

By Le Figaro with AFP

Nearly 15% of severe forms of Covid-19 are explained by genetic and immune abnormalities leading to the failure of a powerful antiviral molecule, naturally produced by the body in the event of infection, according to the work of a French team -american.

This discovery could make it possible to screen people at risk of developing a severe form and to better treat them, according to the researchers. This research, which specifically points to a defect affecting proteins of the immune system, type 1 interferons (IFNs), are detailed in two articles published by the American journal Science.

Form of autoimmune disease

«This is a defect in the production or action of type 1 interferons», Underlines Professor Jean-Laurent Casanova (Imagine Institute, Paris and Rockefeller University in New York). Researchers have demonstrated in some patients genetic abnormalities (mutations of 13 genes) which decrease the production of type I IFNs (3-4% of severe forms).

They also identified in other patients aged 25 to 87 years a form of autoimmune disease, in this case the presence at very high levels in the blood of misdirected antibodies, called autoantibodies. . These neutralize the anti-viral action of type 1 IFNs (in at least 10% of severe forms of Covid) instead of attacking the virus.

This anomaly affects more men than women, according to the study, while autoimmune diseases (dysfunction of the immune system that causes it to attack some of its normal constituents) generally affect women much more. . The study also suggests that the frequency of these antibodies increases with age. Prof. Casanova led this research with Prof. Laurent Abel (Imagine Institute / Inserm), in collaboration with Helen Su from the American National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID / NIH).


the life of an Afghan refugee family in Lesbos fits in a cart

SEEN FROM ELSEWHERE – The middle-class Yussefi family ended up taking refuge on the Greek island after risking everything during a trip to Iran.


A woman observes a new temporary camp for migrants and refugees on the island of Lesvos, Greece, September 22, 2020.
A woman observes a new temporary camp for migrants and refugees on the island of Lesvos, Greece, September 22, 2020. YARA NARDI / REUTERS

Par Cristian Segura (El País)

Afghan hospitality is not lost, even when the hosts are a homeless family. On the Greek island of Lesbos, Masomeh Etemadi and Ismaël Yussefi ask their guests to sit with them on a tarp which they use as a meeting space; they also offer them water and food distributed to them by NGOs active in the region. They strive to maintain their dignity and good manners although they only have one room in a hut built with a few reeds and cloth tied to two olive trees, on a rubbish-covered embankment.

The country followed Etemadi and Yussefi for four days the week after the fire that destroyed Moria refugee camp. They had planted their meager things on the side of the road to the burned-out camp and, waiting to see what the future held in store for them, whether it was another calamity or a sign of hope, they chatted with their visitors and compatriots, always

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massive destruction of mosques in Xinjiang

China has destroyed or damaged thousands of mosques in the sensitive region of Xinjiang (northwest), according to a report released Friday, September 25 by an Australian research institute and funded by the US State Department.

About 16,000 mosques have been destroyed or damaged in recent years in the predominantly Muslim region, says the Australian Institute for Strategic Policy (ASPI), a research firm created by the Australian government, in a detailed report. The researchers say they relied on satellite photos and important “extrapolations»: After analyzing 533 mosques (out of 24,000 officially in Xinjiang according to the Chinese authorities), they made calculations according to statistical models.

Most of the destruction has taken place in the past three years and 8,500 mosques have been completely destroyed, the report says. Some others have seen their domes and minarets removed, according to researchers, who estimate the number of mosques still standing in Xinjiang at 15,500. The study was funded by the US State Department, ASPI said. Washington is strongly opposed to Beijing on many issues and has been at the forefront in recent months in denouncing Chinese policy in Xinjiang.

SEE ALSO – Why the World Lets China Persecute Uyghurs

Long hit by bloody attacks attributed to members of the Muslim Uyghur ethnic group, this immense semi-desert territory is the subject of a firm security takeover in the name of the fight against terrorism. Over a million people, mainly Muslims, were interned there in “camps», Accuse human rights organizations. China says it is “vocational training centers», Intended to help the population to find a job and thus move away from religious extremism.

The Chinese authorities regularly claim to want “siniser” religions. This campaign, carried out in the name of greater control of cults, also aims to fight Islamist movements catalyzing separatist sentiment in Xinjiang.

«This report is all rumor and slanderWang Wenbin, a spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry, responded at a regular press briefing, denouncing “lack of credibility“From the research firm and”its funding from abroad». «Total number of mosques per Muslim capita in Xinjiang is higher than in many Muslim countries”He said.

ASPI released another report on Thursday accusing China of strengthening its network of “detention centers” In the region.


‘Entire group of friends contaminated in the open air at the festival’ –

An evening of partying in the open air will not do much harm, a group of friends of twelve men must have thought. Eleven were subsequently found to be infected with the corona virus.

The people in their twenties and thirties had gone to an outdoor festival in Nijmegen on 12 September to celebrate a birthday, but there, at the Nijmeegse Bierfeesten on a former factory site in the Hazenkamp district, things did not end well.

A few days later, one of the friends reports in the group app that he has a cold. Another has a test and turns out to be infected. In the end, all but one turned out to have the virus. They did not keep their distance. There was even cuddling. “You don’t pay much attention to each other,” says one in De Gelderlander.

Whether the infections really took place at the festival and therefore in the open air, the GGD can only suspect, not prove. “The GGD does not know whether an infection has taken place in the open air. This is an assumption. Infections mainly occur when people do not keep to the 1.5 meters distance, ”said a spokesman.


2000 people in quarantine: Hamm prohibits first family celebrations

Hamm is tearing the corona upper limit significantly. Private celebrations must now be registered after the mass outbreak as a result of a wedding. The city has already made use of the option to ban festivals in several cases.

To contain the corona wave in Hamm, the city has banned three private celebrations. It is about two hen parties and an engagement party, said Mayor Thomas Hunsteger-Petermann. The prohibition is based on the provisions of a new general decree of the city. It had come into force earlier this week after the sharp increase in the number of cases as a result of a major wedding.

The decree provides for a permit for private celebrations with 51 to 150 participants. Celebrations with 25 to 50 participants must be displayed. According to Hunsteger-Petermann, more than 70 applications and notifications had been submitted by Thursday noon. A lead time of three days applies. The city has set up its own hotline for questions about private celebrations. According to the mayor, five employees answer questions from citizens there alone.

As a result, the number of new corona infections in the city of Hamm climbed to the highest nationwide. The city recorded 96 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days on Friday. The trigger for the corona wave with currently almost 200 infected people is considered to be a large wedding and associated other festivities that took place in Hamm and Dortmund at the beginning of September and a week later in Werl. According to a city spokesman, the wedding couple was also infected.

In order to curb the further spread, the authorities have ordered further restrictions in addition to the notification and approval requirements for celebrations. Currently, a maximum of five people or members of two households are allowed to be in public space together. The mask requirement was also reintroduced in class. Hunsteger-Petermann said that the measures were “very much accepted” by the population.

According to the city spokesman, almost 2000 people were in quarantine in Hamm on Thursday. The city monitors compliance with them, for example by calling the landline. “So far, I am not aware that anyone is not following it,” said Hunsteger-Petermann.