In the broadcast room of the Palais Acropolis in Nice, there are many more civil parties than usual. The interest for the local word is there also in the Nice public, more numerous than usual. Christian Estrosi comes forward for his deposition before the Assize Court. A few notes on the desk. “This absolute level of horror, I had never experienced it and since then we asked ourselves thousands of questions, Philippe Pradal (mayor at the time) and I about how we should approach each victim, how to prepare the ‘future’ says the current mayor of Nice who was 1st deputy mayor of Nice in charge of security at the time of the events.
Christian Estrosi tells the court of his July 14, 2016, “carried away by the crowd” which was fleeing, then his passage in town hall, in the basement to understand what is happening. Unable to get to the Promenade as he sees the stopped truck. He can not access the place the time of the lifting of doubt on possible explosives then direction the center of urban supervision for the mayor who then returns on the spot. “An expanse of corpses as far as the eye can see” he explains as he asks “at full speed for privacy screens”. 12:15 a.m.: the President of the Republic calls him: “Christian, I can confirm that this is indeed a terrorist attack”. On the afternoon of Friday July 15, 2016, Pope Francis contacted Christian Estrosi. “What can I do for you ?” said Francois. “Holy Father, can you receive the victims privately who would be happy to receive a message of hope from you?” The following September 21 “we went there” explains Christian Estrosi.
1836 cameras cannot be viewed at the same time on 30 screens
After this reminder, the question of security will take up all the space. On the municipal police, Christian Estrosi recalls that in 2008 there were “recruitments, the installation of cameras” which continue regularly. He gives the security elements: “4000 cameras today in Nice”. Less in 2016 (1836) but 30 screens to view them. During major events, Christian Estrosi details that “the CSU (urban supervision center) welcomes a national police officer” in particular “during the Prom Party and the fireworks”. But “1836 cameras cannot be viewed at the same time on 30 screens” because these are more than 44,000 hours of recordings, explains Christian Estrosi.
“The passages of the terrorist on the Promenade des Anglais were identified as tracking only after” the attack he says and specifies that it “could not be detected by the human eye”. The current mayor will then defend algorithms, artificial intelligence, which identify behaviors and of which Bernard Cazeneuve spoke 10 days ago. A device for the moment prohibited regrets Christian Estrosi. Nice would like this method to be put in place and the city has already organized a press conference to prove the effectiveness of this system last summer and to plead in its favour. He will do it many times during the questions of the lawyers of the civil parties. Maître Le Roy will be asking questions for several hours.
Cameras, artificial intelligence and facial recognition
“Imagine that we have facial recognition, ANPR (reading of license plates)”, relaunches the mayor of Nice, “indeed if you have this vehicle which passes 10 times, you have at one point a red light which lights up and asks you to watch what’s going on”. The lawyer for Promenade des Anges, Maître Le Roy, asks for details on the urban supervision center and on the system on the evening of July 14, 2016. “As regards the organization of this CSU, the sensitive places were permanently on the wall and the Promenade des Anglais is part of it “permanently on display?” “Yes these are the most sensitive places permanently displayed“explains the mayor of Nice but that changes and it can be “the schools at the time of the entry and exit” of the pupils.
“The Promenade des Anglais is permanently among the screens on the wall at the main intersections, western access and corner of the avenue de Verdun” explains Christian Estrosi to Maître Le Roy who also recalls that the “behaviour of the truck is not an offense for a man who is a delivery man by trade”. “We can clearly see that this is a premeditated act” says the current mayor of Nice who believes that “this barbarian, obviously, was in an absolute determination“.”I defend my agents and I refuse that they can be incriminated because they did not see” says Christian Estrosi. “VShas the merit of being clear” says Maître Le Roy.
Laurent Raviot, president of the court, wonders about the 40 minutes of video that Fabron missed and the images of July 11 on the Quai des Etats-Unis. Moments of the terrorist’s itinerary: “the cameras operate at 360 degrees” explains Christian Estrosi on this content “not available”.
We will never win the war against them with the weapons of peace
“The city of Nice has never been asked to use concrete barriers around Euro 2016, contrary to what has been announced on numerous occasions,” said Christian Estrosi. Question from President Laurent Raviot on this subject: don’t you think that something may have been missing in the vigilance of the public authorities? The mayor of Nice brought photos of the organization of Euro 2016. They are broadcast. There is a fan zone set up for the occasion on the Promenade des Anglais and in the Albert 1er garden and Place Masséna with barriers but no visible concrete block.
“How is it that the risk of the truck was not considered upstream?” asks Laurent Raviot. Response from Christian Estrosi: “We are on a high traffic artery, it is a diversion route from the bypass motorway. It has been decided to make the perimeter open from Gambetta (400m from the place of the firing of the fire). artifice) to the place of May 8. Two points where the traffic is so dense that no one can use the lane”.
“As a man do you feel some responsibility?” asks a lawyer. “I would have liked to help more people”. She raises. Answer: “I do not feel responsible for the Islamic State”.
“Is it so hard to ask for forgiveness?” another lawyer asks. “I do not have to ask for forgiveness instead of the State” says Christian Estrosi who adds “sorry dear Nice people for not having succeeded in artificial intelligence” and also asks forgiveness for not having been heard on the doubling of the municipal police. On what “the regulations do not allow”, master Fabien Rajon raises in particular about anticipation. “We will never win the war against them with the weapons of peace,” said the mayor of Nice.
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Nice attack trial: Christian Estrosi talks about security and artificial intelligence | RCF Nice Côte d’Azur
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