COP21 site at Le Bourget
26 November 2015

Optimal measures for ensuring the security of COP21

In the context of the very serious threat affecting our country, ensuring optimum security for the Paris Climate Conference (COP21) is key to the event’s success. At the beginning of November, the Government took the decision to conduct border controls for one month. These controls will continue for as long as the terrorist threat renders them necessary. The Minister of the Interior has announced special measures with regard to traffic and travel in order to ensure rapid and secure access to the Le Bourget site for delegations, while causing the least possible disruption to journeys for the inhabitants of Paris and the Île-de-France. 120,000 police officers, gendarmes and soldiers are being deployed across the national territory in order to ensure the French nation’s security.
Content published under the Government Valls II from 2014 26th August to 2016 11th February
 
France will host COP21 from 30 November to 11 December. This event will bring together numerous Heads of State and Government, delegations from non-governmental organisations, and key figures from international organisations. A total of 160 countries are set to take part in this conference, as well as 147 Heads of State and Government.
 

Special measures with regard to traffic and travel

 
The necessary measures have been taken to reinforce and adjust existing public transport networks during the Conference, in liaison with the transport operators concerned, in order to ensure rapid and secure access to the Le Bourget site for delegations, while causing the least possible disruption to journeys for the inhabitants of Paris and the Île-de-France.
 
Considerable restriction of movement will therefore be required on Sunday 29 and Monday 30 November to take into account both the need for free traffic flow and the security requirements connected with the state of emergency. Detailed information on the restrictions as well as recommendations for private individuals and businesses are available on the website of the Paris Préfecture de Police.
 

Border controls

 
At the beginning of November, the Government took the decision to conduct border controls from 13 November 2015. The measure was reinforced within the framework of the state of emergency decided upon by the French President and Prime Minister for the entire French national territory, following the events of 13 November. These controls will continue for as long as the terrorist threat renders them necessary. Against the backdrop of a serious threat, this constitutes a key factor in ensuring our country’s security. Border controls are being conducted by 5,000 specifically-deployed police and customs officers.
 
Since 13 November, and for as long as the terrorist threat requires, all persons must be in possession of documents enabling them to prove their identity at border crossing points:
 
  • persons of foreign nationality must be able to produce the documents or papers authorising them to travel or stay in France
 
  • all users of land, rail, air and sea transport must comply with these recommendations in order to facilitate their journeys and save time
 
Moreover, the Headquarters Agreement between the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the French Government makes provision for a facilitation system for the issuance of visas to official Conference participants (delegations, participating NGOs, journalists, etc.). Official COP21 participants will be issued short-stay visas on simple presentation of their letter of official accreditation. They are exempted from having to provide the traditional supporting documents.
 
The European Regulation concerning Schengen (Schengen Borders Code, Articles 23 et seq.) enables Member States to re-establish controls at internal borders within the Schengen Area, on the condition that such measures are temporary and justified on grounds of public order and security. France notified the other Member States and the European Commission of its request in mid-October, as provided for in the procedure. This measure is put in place for major (political, sports etc.) events leading to a flood of visitors and third-country nationals that may be potential targets for extremist and terrorist groups. Several countries have already made use of this measure, in particular for previous COP events, such as Copenhagen in 2009 (COP15) and Warsaw in 2013 (COP19), as well as for the 2009 NATO summit in Strasbourg.
 
This measure illustrates France’s concern to ensure that the Conference takes place in an atmosphere of serenity, security and dialogue. Constant dialogue is also being maintained with all pillars of civil society, which are very much involved. This will of course continue during COP21.
 

Special mobilisation of security forces

 
In addition to the personnel deployed for border controls, the COP site itself will be supervised by 2,800 police officers and gendarmes. Mobile police units – riot control officers (CRS) and mobile gendarmerie units – will be called upon at an unprecedented level, both in Paris and in the provinces, in order to ensure constant maintenance of public order and avoid any flare-ups. 120,000 police officers, gendarmes and soldiers are deployed across the national territory in order to ensure the French nation’s security.


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