Under the headline “Police officers have a price on their heads”, the Union of Police Officers (UDO) Unsa informs its members that the terrorist organization incites Jihadists to kill police officers for a sum of 60.000 €. On the same day, photos of police officers and their families were posted in the halls of buildings in three municipalities of the 93.
French police officers are still in shock over the last two murders of their colleagues. That of Stéphanie Montfermé, 49 years old, whose throat was slit last Friday in the lock of her police station in Rambouillet (78) by an individual shot by the police. And that of Eric Masson, 37 years old, shot down on Wednesday by a drug dealer in the street in Avignon. They learn today that their own safety and that of their family is now threatened by Al Qaeda as revealed by the newspaper of the Union of Officers (UDO) of Unsa Police.
60,000 € paid in Bitcoins
The terrorist group has indeed published on April 14, 2021 a “bounty” on the heads of French police officers, as was once done in the Wild West. MEMRI magazine, whose source of information is not in doubt, explains that al-Qaeda asks its supporters to “commit terrorist acts under the cover of demonstrations that take place in some Western countries” and in particular the United States and France. The magazine even gives a methodology for confronting a police officer and ultimately stabbing him.
The article goes on to suggest that jihadists “join the demonstrations” to attack and kill police officers. Al Qaeda promises a sum of €60,000 paid in Bitcoins for each policeman killed. However, on the day of MEMRI’s publication, April 14, posters were posted in the lobbies of several buildings in three cities in Sainte-Saint-Denis with photos of police officers and their families. “To give jobs to bounty hunters,” the police wrote in their union magazine.
Islamism, drugs, trafficking…
“It is very worrying. We will have to be very vigilant,” recognizes Laurent Massonneau, general secretary of the Union of UNSA officers. These threats from al-Qaeda shed light on the Rambouillet murder. We knew that names and photos of police officers were circulating on the Internet. Now there is a price on their heads. We are living in a period of violence and unrest where different worlds are intertwined: Islamism, drugs, trafficking of all kinds. There has never been such a porosity between these environments. Police officers and the civilian personnel who work with them become prey for killers. Our ministry, which cannot ignore this new threat, must work on these issues to protect police officers.
Simple but urgent demands
In this very worrying context, the police officers demand that the ministry accede to their first demands:
- The protection of identity. We demand that all procedures be written under the RIO number, without prior authorization, without any minimum requirement of the penal gravity of the incriminated facts.
- Appropriate training. More than training, a state of mind must be established. It is necessary to train to face aggressions, to learn or re-learn reflexes that have been put to sleep by years of lack of training.
- Access to weapons. The service weapon is a ball and chain. Decree No. 2013-700 of July 30, 2013 art. 122 specifies that police officers have the right to obtain a category B1 weapon (pistol or revolver) on a personal basis, without passing it on a sports shooter’s quota. It states that they also have the right to carry that weapon off duty. The law exists, but no decree of application has ever been taken.
- Clear instructions. We therefore ask the authorities to assume instructions allowing the police to work in security conditions adapted to the threats.
- Concrete penalties. Finally, if the penal code provides for maximum penalties, it does not set a threshold. We demand that each attack on the physical integrity of a police officer or his family be punished by a minimum prison sentence.