The French government has condemned an open letter signed by active soldiers saying the country is heading for a “civil war” because of religious extremism.
About 1000 military and women, including about 20 retired generals, wrote their names in the letter.
He accused “fanatical parties” of creating divisions between communities and said Islamists had taken over the country’s territory.
Ministers denounced the message, which published in right-wing magazines.
The letter was first published on April 21, the 60th anniversary of the failed coup.
The signatories said: ‘Time is serious and France is in danger.
Far-right leader Marine Le Pen, a candidate for next year’s presidential election, has publicly endorsed the former general.
However, Florence Parly, the minister in charge of the armed forces, tweeted: “Two immutable principles drive the military’s political actions: neutrality and loyalty.
He has previously warned that any signatories still serving in the military will punished for defying laws that force them to be politically neutral.
What does the letter say?
The report warns French President Emmanuel Macron, his government and his legislators of “several deadly dangers” that France, including “Islamism and hordes of banlieues,” threatens poor immigrant suburbs around French cities.
Signatories continue to accuse “a form of anti-racism” of dividing communities and trying to create “race wars” by attacking statues and other aspects of French history.
They also accused the government of using police to “act as agents and goats of the heart” in recent years by brutally suppressing popular “vest” or “yellow vest” protests.
“There is no time for delay, otherwise tomorrow the civil war will end this growing chaos and death, and the number of people who will cause this chaos and death will be tens of thousands,” the letter concluded. . “
Hugh Schofield told the BBC in Paris that in a country that pays thousands of former generals to retirement and reserve lists, only 20 general’s support the explosive language.
However, our correspondent said that writing this letter is quite a sign of dangerous times, and the support of Marine Le Pen means that these issues will resonate next year.
What is the reaction?
Members of the French military, whether active or in reserve barred from expressing public opinion about religion and politics. Ms. Parly called on those who signed the letter to punish.
“Sanctions are imposed on those who violate the reserve duties. If there are active soldiers among the signatories, I call on the Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces to enforce the laws … that is, sanctions,” the minister said. Radio France info on Monday.
Ms. Parly referred to the case of a former foreign army general who fired by the military for participating in anti-immigrant demonstrations in Calais.