France’s Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin announced on Friday that 45,000 police officers would be deployed throughout the country to deal with expected night time unrest in response to the death of 17-year-old Nahel M on Thursday night. Reports indicate this is an increase from the 40,000 officers mobilised the day prior.
In addition, over 400 arrests were made across France as demonstrations and clashes between protesters and police ensued around the shooting of Nahel at Nanterre which is located approximately 11 km northwest of Paris city center. France’s elite RAID force was also posted in Bordeaux, Lyon, Roubaix, Marseille and Lille to help control the protests and quell any further unrest. Things became especially tense in Nanterre where Nahel succumbed to his wounds days before in Marseille.
The death of Nahel has shook many in the nation prompting them to take to the streets in demand for justice and accountability. The situation remains volatile as people remain committed to peacefully demonstrating for change and calling for a greater respect for people’s lives.
Tension and violence erupted in France as protesters took to the streets in memory of Nahel, a slain teenager who was killed during a police traffic stop in Nanterre. Amid the burning debris, “Revenge for Nahel” appeared on one wall in Nanterre with an alternate spelling of his name.
A bank in Nanterre was set on fire and 15 people were arrested after the march became violent. In Marseille, authorities reported that fireworks were thrown at police officers by protesters while six people were taken into custody in Lille after participating in a protest barred by authorities.
The unrest continued through Tuesday night, leaving 40 cars to burn and 24 police officers injured. To address the situation, a police officer has been placed under formal investigation for voluntary homicide and has been detained in preliminary custody. (ANI). It is time that authorities step up and respond swiftly to prevent further loss of life or destruction of property as tensions remain high across France.