#Decryption – Lyon and Barcelona: the European allies against violence

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Two cities which have already faced the terrorism

         Assassination attempts are criminal acts, but they also have a load of terror. Yet, these attacks have always existed and for various reasons (political, religious, etc…). When a terrorist tries to raid people, he tries to harm something bigger: a symbol they cannot stand because of their fanatism (the Republic, a community with different values, etc…). It is due to this blind will cities are main targets for a such violence. Barcelona, the 2nd biggest city in Spain and Lyon, the 3rd biggest one in France are important, progressist and thick. Both have already faced the terrorism.

On the August 17th of 2017, Barcelona was the butt of a terrorist attack. Las Ramblas, one of the most crowded streets in the city, was affected by ram-raids. The following day, another assassination attempt was launched close to Barcelona, at Cambrils. The track record is clear: 15 people died in Barcelona, 1 in Cambrils and around 130 people were injured.

Two years after this frightening event, on the Mai 24th of 2019, the Victor-Hugo Street in Lyon was the target of a bombing. This street, as well as Barcelona, is usually frequented. The track record is less terrible: 14 people were casually injured by the explosion.

These two horrible events have been admitted by ISIS.

A European project: Lyon and Barcelona in the international field

         So as to face the rise of violence and more precisely the terrorism, the European Union launched a security plan called “SECUR’CITIES”, involving Lyon and Barcelona. Thanks to a moderner equipment, an exchange of knowledge between the two places and a prevention, Lyon and Barcelona would be most likely to fight in a better way the insecurity of their location. From 2019 to 2021 (3 years), the two cities have to implement this project. But how does the protection of people cost? The total is estimated at 3 000 000 of euros. Hopefully, the European Union takes the most financial part of it by spending 2 775 000 of euros.

In order to anticipate the danger, the cities are to identify all the places where people are concentrated (e.g.: Place Bellecour in Lyon or Avenue Reina Maria Christina in Barcelona). For instance, Lyon is developing a catalog with the 50 most asked places for all kinds of event. So, the city will be prepared to face any situation. Moreover, one will soon be capable of borrowing security equipment to the city so that their event may be safer.

Our cities are also working on the modernization of their surveillance systems. For example, Barcelona is bound to initiate a changeover, from their current analogical system to a digital one. This brand-new system is likely to be applied to the 24 security cameras.

But the thing to remind of is two European cities are working together in a common goal: the security of French and Spanish citizens. This community is globally attached to the European citizenship. This kind of project stands for the strength of the Union and its being practical.

“Security”, a scary and necessary word

         Though the term “security” is supposed to reassure and protect us, it is paradoxically a word which fears people. Indeed, when one reads “security” in a public place due to the state of emergency, people do not feel it as a shield.

The French national institute for statistical and economic studies (ISEE in French) sounded out the feeling of insecurity in France from 2010 to 2019. This feeling increased, starting from 20,5 percent to 21,2 percent of the French population.

A question may be asked: may we replace our semantic field?


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Ianis Boulbahri

AUSG Pôle Presse


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