France is erupting for protests after police arrested teenager Nahel M | to kill Racial Affairs News
France is waiting for more protests after police shot dead a teenager, an incident French President Emmanuel Macron said has “moved the whole country”.
Clashes broke out between protesters and the police overnight after an officer killed the 17-year-old woman in the Paris suburb of Nanterre.
The teenager, identified as Nahel M, is said to have disobeyed a police order to stop his car on Tuesday.
He was driving a rental car when police pulled him over for several traffic violations, prosecutors said.
A video circulating on social media, confirmed by the French news agency AFP, shows two police officers trying to stop the vehicle, with one pointing his weapon at the driver. window and shooting at close range when he appears to be still driving.
The car moved a few meters before it crashed.
The emergency services tried to revive the teenager who was at the scene but he died shortly afterwards.
The deadly police shooting was “inexplicable” and “unforgivable”, Macron said on Wednesday, as the government raced to ease tensions.
“A teenager was killed. That is unbelievable and impossible,” he said during a visit to the Mediterranean city of Marseille, adding that the case had “moved the whole country”.
Local residents held a protest outside the police headquarters. Tensions rose later on Tuesday; demonstrators lit fires, set a car on fire, destroyed bus stops and threw fire extinguishers at police who responded with tear gas and grenades.
Thousands of police were deployed on Wednesday in case of further unrest.
Al Jazeera’s Natacha Butler, reporting from Nanterre, said anger had “overflowed” in the suburb.
“Many people are shocked and confused by what has happened on their doorstep,” she said, adding that the video circulating on social media was fueling feelings of anger.
“People here are saying this is a cold-blooded murder. The French government has called the images shocking and distressing. The government wants calm, talking about research.
“The problem is, we’ve seen incidents like this over the past year and a half – more than 13 people have been killed in traffic stops and investigations. People say this is another example of police tactics in France that are often heavy-handed and deadly. “
“There is a feeling that the French police have a culture of prevention and that it is not being dealt with. “
During the riots, 31 people were arrested, 25 police officers were injured, and 40 cars were burned, officials said.
The French soccer star Kylian Mbappé, who grew up in the Parisian suburbs, was among those who were shocked by the latest murder.
“I feel bad for my France,” he tweeted, lamenting the “unacceptable situation”.
“All my thoughts go out to the family and loved ones of Nael, this little angel who left far too soon.”
Actor Omar Sy called for “justice” to “respect the memory of this child”.
The officer accused of shooting the driver was arrested on charges of murder, the Nanterre prosecutor’s office said.
French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin admitted the images on social media were “extremely appalling”.
In a statement, lawyers rejected a statement reported by police that officers’ lives were in danger because the driver had threatened to run them over.
Yassine Bouzrou, a lawyer for the family, told local media that while all parties had to wait for the outcome of the investigation, the images “clearly showed a policeman killing a young man in cold blooded”.
“This is far from any form of legitimate defence,” he said, adding that the family had filed a complaint accusing the police of “lying” by initially saying the car was had tried to dislodge the officers.
After a record 13 deaths from police shootings during traffic stops in France last year, Nahel’s killing is the second fatal shooting in such circumstances in 2023.
Three people were killed by police firing after refusing to obey a traffic stop in 2021 and two in 2020.
A Reuters news agency count of fatal shootings in 2021 and 2022 shows that most of the victims were black or of Arab origin.
“As a mother from Nanterre, I feel insecurity for our children,” said Mornia Labssi, a local resident and anti-racism activist, who said she had spoken to the victim’s family. victim, which she said was of Algerian origin.