The Promenade des Anglais in Nice, where the truck attack took place. (Magnus Franklin / CC 2.0)

Just over a week ago, a truck sped through the popular boardwalk in Nice, France, in a terrorist attack that killed more than 80 people and left many more wounded. The driver of the truck, who was killed by police during the rampage, has been identified as Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, and five suspected accomplices have been charged.

In the aftermath of the attack, officials in Nice are clashing with federal authorities on how to respond and implement future security measures. The Paris prosecutor’s office has requested that security footage of the tragedy be destroyed, but Nice officials have fired back by filing legal paperwork to prevent the destruction of potential evidence, which could be used in upcoming trials. The BBC reports:

“This is the first time we are asked to destroy evidence,” French newspaper Le Figaro quoted a source as saying. “The CCTV department and the city of Nice could be prosecuted for this, and also the officers in charge do not have jurisdiction to engage in such operations [to delete material].”

The paper said police and prosecutors wanted footage of the attack destroyed to preserve the dignity of victims and so it could not be used by jihadists for propaganda purposes.

But the French government has faced growing criticism about the extent of security measures and some reports have suggested the CCTV footage may show where and how police were deployed.

In the days since the attack, both the federal and local governments have faced fallout from allegations over inadequate security measures. For example, a smartphone application created to warn users about sudden crises has been criticized for its slow response time.

Another French newspaper has reported that the government lied about how heavily it policed the event. “Witnesses and a police source who has seen security camera footage told the Liberation newspaper that a single municipal police car was blocking the junction where the lorry entered the promenade,” states the BBC, despite “the government’s assertion that more heavily armed national police were on duty at the entry point.”

—Posted by Emma Niles

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig