Sunday, June 16, 2024

Protesters clash with riot officers at march for killed teen in France

French security forces have deployed tear gas as they clashed with protesters during a rally triggered by the fatal shooting of Nahel M, a 17-year-old teenager, by a police officer during a traffic stop.

The march in Nanterre, a town on the western outskirts of Paris, was proceeding peacefully at first, with Nahel’s mother leading the crowd. But later, some protesters began throwing projectiles at police outside the main local administration building in Nanterre, and security forces then dispersed the protest by firing tear gas, according to local media reports released on Thursday.

Burning vehicles were also seen in the streets during a march, Xinhua news agency reported.

Earlier on Thursday, Nanterre Prosecutor Pascal Prache held a press conference detailing the circumstances of Nahel’s death.

He said that French police officers had made two attempts to make a Polish-licensed Mercedes pull over, but the driver refused to comply.

The police officer who fired his gun later told investigators that he had acted for fear of the car causing a fatal accident.

According to Prache, however, preliminary investigations indicate that the police officer’s use of his gun was not “justified”.

The prosecutor’s office is therefore expected to charge the police officer in question with intentional homicide, he added.

Tuesday’s shooting triggered violent protests on Wednesday throughout France, which led to the police arresting nearly 150 people in major French cities.

To avoid further violence, Valerie Pecresse, the president of the Ile-de-France region, announced that buses and tramways would not be running in the region on Thursday night after 9 p.m.



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