PARIS – French president Francois Hollande says he has decided to increase the military budget by 3.8 billion euros ($4.2 billion) between now and 2019 to allow troops to fulfill their anti-terror mission.
Hollande, speaking after a defense council meeting, said he will maintain "in a durable way" the 7,000 troops currently deployed on French soil to patrol in airports, train stations and other sensitive sites.
The budget increase will allow the defense ministry to cut 18,500 fewer jobs than previously planned, according to a top official in Hollande's entourage who was not authorized to speak publicly. Under the military budget law passed last year, 34,000 job cuts were planned from 2014 to 2019.
Following attacks in Paris in January, the government raised the security alert to its highest level.