After a deadly police shot: serious riots in Paris suburbs


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After a deadly police shot
Heavy riots in Parisian suburbs

A police officer shoots a youth during a traffic check, the video causes outrage and anger in France. There are riots in several Parisian suburbs. Cars and garbage cans are burning, and a town hall is also on fire.

In the Paris suburb of Nanterre, serious riots broke out after a fatal police shot at a 17-year-old driver during a traffic check. Garbage cans, cars and an elementary school were set on fire by angry people and large quantities of exploding fireworks were thrown at emergency services, French media reported. Accordingly, barricades were erected between the high-rise settlements and firefighters were hindered in their operations.

The riots, which began in the evening with a demonstration in front of the Nanterre police station, spread to neighboring towns during the night. A town hall was set on fire in Mantes-la-Jolie. The police used tear gas and rubber bullets, but had to retreat in the face of the massive attacks, sometimes at a run. According to authorities, 15 people were arrested.

A police motorcycle patrol had stopped the car occupied by three people on Tuesday morning. A video verified by the broadcaster France Info shows how one of the officers aimed his gun at the level of the driver’s door in the stationary car. The area in front of the car is free. When the 17-year-old suddenly drives off at the wheel, the officer fires at the youngster at close range, fatally injuring him.

Policeman probably shot without need

As reported by France Info, the officer was taken into police custody on suspicion of manslaughter. According to Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin, after the death of the young driver, the police authorities began investigations to clarify the incident. The deadly police operation triggered outrage in France, and in view of the video recordings there is talk of excessive police violence. Time and time again, people in France die in banal vehicle checks if they don’t follow police instructions. Often it is not about serious criminals, but, as in the case of Nanterre, about people who have attracted attention with petty crimes. The 17-year-old is said to have been known to the police for previous traffic offenses and was also stopped this time for such a violation, as reported by France Info.

This is one of the reasons why the most recent death in a police operation triggered a heated political debate. “The death penalty no longer exists in France. No police officer has the right to kill unless it is in self-defence,” tweeted left-wing politician Jean-Luc Mélenchon. The police bring the authority of the state into disrepute and must be reformed from the ground up.

The president of the conservative Républicains, Éric Ciotti, expressed his support for the police forces in Nanterre. “It’s going to be a tough night, you are the defenders of our collective security. There is no justification for this chaos!”

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