PARIS (Reuters) – France will deploy 10,000 sol-diers on home soil by Tuesday and post almost 5,000 extra police officers to protect Jewish sites after the killing of 17 people by militants in Paris last week, officials said.
Speaking a day after the biggest French public demonstration ever recorded, in honour of the victims, Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said the country remained at risk of further attacks. Soldiers would guard transport hubs, tourism sites and key buildings and mount general street patrols.
“The threats remain and we have to protect ourselves from them. It is an internal operation that will mobilise almost as many men as we have in our overseas operations,” Le Drian told reporters after a cabinet meeting.
The victims, including journalists and police, died in three days of violence that began on Wednesday with an attack on the satirical news-paper Charlie Hebdo, known for mocking Islam and other religions. Many at Sunday’s march wore badges and carried placards declaring “Je suis Charlie” (I am Charlie).
The Charlie Hebdo gunmen, two French-born brothers of Algerian origin, singled out the weekly for its publication of controversial cartoons.
The three days of bloodshed ended on Friday with a siege at a Jewish deli in Paris where four hostages and another gunman were killed. That gunman declared allegiance to Islamic State and said he was acting in response to French military deployments against militant Islamist groups overseas.