A new law that allows private security staff to carry guns when they are in dangerous circumstances and when protecting someone facing a threat.
Security guards have been allowed to carry a baton, tear gas or in some cases guns since the March 2017 security act but this was the exception rather than the rule. The new act formalises their role.
France’s CNCDH human rights commission has criticised the move as guards do not have police training, code or chain of command.
Private security federation SNES said it did not mean France’s 170,000 private security staff would carry guns as numbers would be limited. It is thought about 5,000 already do so for bullion transfers, at power stations and on ships.
The law was changed after the Charlie Hebdo attack to bring it up to date in line with the terror menace and threats to several personalities.