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France: 600 people arrested, 200 officers hurt amid protests over fatal police shooting of teen driver

Firecrackers were thrown at police officers in Marseille and many regions of France showed burning debris and riot police officers struggling to quell the unrest.

Edited By: Aveek Banerjee Paris Updated on: June 30, 2023 13:29 IST
The protests in France entered their third day on Thursday
Image Source : AP The protests in France entered their third day on Thursday after the fatal police shooting

French driver shooting: As violent protests in France entered their third day after a delivery driver was fatally shot by a police officer in Nanterre, a suburban area in Paris, over 600 people have been arrested across the country and 200 police officers were injured.

RAID, France's elite police unit, were deployed in several main French cities including Bordeaux, Marseille and Lyon, reported CNN. France's Interior Ministry had earlier planned on deploying 40,000 police officers across the country in order to suppress the increasing unrest.

As many as 667 people, 300 of them from Paris, have been arrested so far from different parts of the country, said French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin. 

Meanwhile, a bank in Nanterre was set ablaze amid the protests, and 'vengeance pour Nael' (revenge for Nael) was sprayed on a wall in the area to honour the deceased 17-year-old driver Nael M. Firecrackers were thrown at police officers in Marseille and many regions of France showed burning debris and riot police officers struggling to quell the unrest. 

Police stations, town halls and schools were set on fire on Wednesday, leading to the arrest of 150 people. 

Nael's death had sparked outrage in the streets of Nanterre, with residents setting fire on barricades, demolishing a bus stop and hurling firecrackers at the police. The police resorted to firing tear gas and dispersion grenades to pacify the situation.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday called the incident 'inexplicable and inexcusable' and appealed for calm amid the ensuing chaos.

In a footage of the incident, two policemen were standing aside the car and one officer firing into the window just as the vehicle pulled away. The car crashed into a nearby post and Nael M died at the scene due to the gunshot wound. 

The accused police officer has been arrested and will face potential manslaughter charges, said Nanterre prosecutor's office.

ALSO READ | 'Inexplicable, inexcusable': France's Macron as 17-year-old delivery agent killed in fatal police shooting

ALSO READ | France: Violent protests erupt in Paris suburb following 17-year-old driver's death by police officer

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