Protests continue to rock France over police killing of French-Algerian teen

2023-07-02 17:46:09
Protests continue to rock France over police killing of French-Algerian teen

A wave of protests continue to rock France for a fifth consecutive night over the police shooting death of a teenager of North African decent despite official claims of ebbing unrest.

The French interior ministry declared on Sunday that their initial claim of 486 protester arrested overnight has now climbed to 719, but insisted that the declining number of arrests -- compared to the previous night’s 1,300 -- was an indication that things are calming down.

However, local media outlets widely reported that tensions remained high as French authorities deployed tens of thousands of police forces in the capital Paris and other major cities to quell the unrest.

Last week, police brutally killed Nahel M, a French Algerian teenager after he was stopped at an intersection in the Parisian suburb of Nanterre.

His murder has sparked violent protests and nighttime clashes in Paris and other cities against systemic racism and police brutality.

Police initially lied and accused the 17-year-old of trying to run over an officer. And, as is often the case, national media reported police fabrications as facts — until cell phone video from a bystander showed the devastating truth.

Video footage shows French police brandishing rifles and menacing Nahel before summarily executing the teenage driver with a bullet to the head as he pulled away. Contrary to false claims by the police, no officer was standing in front of the car or physically threatened by the youth driving away.

The officer who killed Nahel is said to be facing investigations and placed in preliminary detention.

French police killed Nahel because French racism enabled it

France has a long and sordid history of colonial racism and violence against people racialised as “non-white”, Crystal Fleming, a professor of sociology and Africana studies at Stony Brook University in the US, wrote in an article in Al Jazeera.

French oppression against non-whites was perpetrated in its former colonies, stretching from nations in the Caribbean Islands to the Indian Ocean, North and West Africa as well as Vietnam, among many other populations, Fleming said.

France has ruthlessly oppressed Algerian people in particular – including those who are French citizens.

Indeed, French colonisation of Algeria dates back to the early 1800s and involved the widespread use of brutal violence and mass killings to establish French rule.


Error! Error occured!