After a farmer shot a man who broke into his home, French President Emmanuel Macron said the French people do not have the right to self-defense, and the man should have instead let the police handle the incident.
Macron made his controversial remarks on Europe 1 news channel while broadcasting in Fourras, France, after learning of the news that a 35-year-old man from Longré, in the north of Charente, was indicted for murder after fatally shooting a 40-year-old man who broke into his home last Friday.
According to the initial investigation, the farmer fired twice with a large caliber rifle at a group of four burglars, killing one of them. The self-defense shooting took place last Friday, between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m., and the man was alone with his 3-year-old daughter at the time.
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When commenting on the matter, Macron said that he considers himself to be living in the “state of law.”
“Everyone must be safe, and the public authorities have to ensure it,” he declared while speaking on Europe 1.
“But I am opposed to self-defense. It’s very clear and undisputable because otherwise the country becomes the Wild West. And I don’t want a country where weapons proliferate and where we consider that it’s up to the citizens to defend themselves,” said Macron.
The president said he wants the French to rely on the police and the gendarmerie to ensure their safety, however, critics have pointed to France’s deteriorating security situation, increase in murders, and sexual assaults. The existence of no-go zones in majority migrant neighborhoods where police fear to go has only fueled fears that France is unable to police a significant portion of its population.
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With an eye on the upcoming election, Macron has attempted to paper over his flimsy record on security and crime, with the leader highly unpopular with police officers.
“This is also why I decided to create 200 gendarmerie brigades to be more present on the ground in rural areas,” Macron said during his appearance on Europe 1.
Macron, despite essentially saying the farmer was wrong to defend himself, also said he did not want to fully comment on the details of the case.
“I’m not going to judge this news. I convey the rules,” Macron said.
After being indicted for “murder,” the farmer was released by police but placed under judicial supervision.