We won't win war on terror: Former French PM

Europe is taking the wrong approach to fighting terrorism, former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin has told CNBC.

Speaking immediately after a series of explosions rocked the Belgian capital of Brussels, de Villepin said that they were "tragic events" but added that Europe should be showing that it is sticking to its rule of law and can only "reduce" the threat of terrorism.

"I do believe that our strategy should be very different than the one it is. Much less a military approach than a political approach, trying to find solutions in the Middle East and we are far from doing that," he said.

A series of deadly explosions hit Brussels on Tuesday. Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel told a news conference that terrorists had committed murder in Zaventem Airport as well as at the Maelbeek metro station. He labelled it a cowardly attack and said it was a black day for Belgium.

Speaking on the outskirts of the Boao economic forum in China, de Villepin said that Tuesday's events would only create more fear and said that there should not be any "triumphalism" when known terrorists are caught by police. The blasts come four days after the capture of Salah Abdeslam, a suspect in last year's Paris attacks, in Brussels.

"I do believe we are not addressing right the issue of terrorism today," de Villepin added.

"We are giving too much communication importance, too much politics, while we should be addressing the issue on a much more technical basis, showing that we are sticking to our rule of law, we are sticking to our values, and to make democracy a strength, not a vulnerability.

He urged cooperation between police, intelligence and justice officials and said that the focus should be on "human intelligence" rather than technical intelligence because "we are overestimating the terrorists."

"These people are playing with very little means and they need very little to do huge disasters on our communities," he said. "We are not going to win the war on terror. We can divide terrorists, we can eliminate for a large part terrorism, but we can only reduce it."

—CNBC's Antonia Matthews contributed to this article.

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