But has only moved against some, not all, of them. Why is that? “Paris fears extremists may work at airport,” by Katrin Bennhold for the International Herald Tribune, :
ROISSY, France: The French authorities charged with assessing security risks at Charles de Gaulle airport have stripped 72 suspect Muslim workers of their security clearance, but about a dozen others are still working in the most restricted areas, including some cleaning planes and handling baggage for flights to the United States, according to a government security official and the airport workers themselves.
Some terrorism experts are asking why the government has not moved faster to suspend access for employees who may constitute a security risk, especially since details have emerged about some of the suspended workers. Several of them are suspected of having trained in terrorist camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and one was friends with the “shoe bomber,” according to the security official in charge of the case.
Some of those suspended have sued, complaining that they were unfairly targeted, and labor unions have taken up their case. Others, notified more than a month ago that they might lose their security clearance, are still waiting for a summons from the authorities and hope to retain their access badges.
One is Hassane Tariqui, 37, a French citizen of Moroccan origin who supervises cleaners inside passenger planes, most of them bound for the United States. On Sept. 21, he received a letter from the authorities informing him that his attitude and personal behavior posed a risk to airport security.
But he is still in his job, cleaning planes for Air France, Delta, Continental and American. On Monday, he said, he was on five U.S.-bound planes, including an Air France flight headed for New York.
“If they really think I am a security risk, why am I still allowed to work here?” said Tariqui, who has been employed for 16 years at Charles de Gaulle, France’s main international airport.
Good question, Tariqui.