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1 Jul 2023

French police arrested 1,311 people Friday night before the funeral today of the teen delivery driver killed by police, as authorities watch to see if the protests have crested or only beginning

Protests And Heightened Security After French Youth Shot By Police

More than 1,300 protesters were arrested Friday.

Corbis via Getty Images

A funeral for Nahel Marzouk, a 17-year-old Algerian delivery driver who was fatally shot by police on Tuesday, was held in the Paris suburb of Nanterre on Saturday morning.

Security was stationed at the funeral in an effort to maintain order, according to CNN, as protests continued throughout France.

Police have arrested over 2,400 people since protests began on Tuesday, according to French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin, who added that the intensity of protests was “much less” despite an increase in arrests on Friday.

At least 79 police and firefighter officials were injured throughout France on Friday.

Officials estimate about 2,500 fires were set by protesters across the country on Friday, according to the Associated Press, though protests also continued overseas in French Guiana, where a 54-year-old government worker was killed by a stray bullet as protesters clashed with police.

“Many of us are from working-class neighborhoods, we too share this feeling of pain and sadness,” the French national soccer team said in a statement through Kylian Mbappe’s Instagram, adding, “Violence must stop to leave way for mourning, dialogue and reconstruction.”

45,000. That’s how many police officials were mobilized to help quell the protests on Friday, according to Darmanin, in addition to armored vehicles.

Friday’s protests caused French President Emmanuel Macron to delay a state visit to Germany this weekend, the first by a French president in 23 years, according to Reuters, though Macron spoke with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier over the phone Saturday to discuss the protests.

Macron has blamed TikTok and Snapchat for having a “considerable role” in causing violence during protests. TikTok videos linking to riots were pushed by the platform’s algorithm, according to French outlet BFM. Macron called for both companies to remove “the most sensitive content” from their platforms, suggesting they should have a “spirit of responsibility.” A Snapchat spokesperson told the Associated Press the company had increased moderation of its platform in an effort to detect content connected to the protests.

Protests have ensued throughout France since an officer shot a 17-year-old Algerian delivery driver in the Paris suburb of Nanterre on Tuesday. The unnamed officer has been charged with voluntary manslaughter. A video of the teenager’s death was posted online, showing an officer leaning over the hood of a car before appearing to fire a shot at the car’s driver. Protests have centered on the French police’s treatment of minority groups, as the U.N.’s human rights office called for France to “seriously address the deep issues of racism and discrimination in law enforcement.” French President Emmanuel Macron—who earlier called the shooting “unforgivable”—condemned the protests, suggesting protesters were acting on “an unacceptable instrumentalization of the death of a teenager.” The U.S. Embassy in Paris has cautioned American travelers from visiting France, noting any travelers should avoid mass gatherings and “areas of significant police activity.”

Police Killing Of Teenager Triggers Massive Protests In France—Here’s What To Know (Forbes)

875 Arrested In France On Third Night Of Protests (Forbes)