| 23 July 2024, Tuesday |

France: 5 police officers detained over death of man during nationwide riots

On Tuesday, five police officers were apprehended in connection with the demise of a 27-year-old individual in the southern French city of Marseille. This incident occurred during the nationwide protests that unfolded in early July. Prosecutors have confirmed the arrests.
Last month, France was jolted by fierce rioting over the killing of a 17-year-old in the Paris suburb of Nanterre, who was shot dead by a policeman for fleeing a traffic check and failing to comply with an order to stop his car.

The riots in the country witnessed a violent response from the police as hundreds of people were arrested and several police officers suffered wounds.
The prosecutors further added that several civilians and police are also giving evidence as witnesses.

The 27-year-old who lost his life was identified as Bendriss, who was married and a father of one. His widow is now expecting a second child. As per reports, Bendriss died after feeling unwell while riding a scooter.
His postmortem showed traces on his chest, of what as per reports could be the impact of a shot from a blast ball, known in French as an LBD and commonly used by the country’s police.

Latest controversy around Marseille police
The investigation into this matter is the latest controversy to surround the Marseille police.

Earlier, a 22-year-old, named Hedi, had to have a part of his skull amputated after he was beaten up and fired on with an LBD on July 21 by a group of men who were suspected to be police officers.

Four Marseille police officers have been charged over the incident. Whereas, three others have been released under judicial supervision. The fourth has been remanded in custody during the time period of the probe. His arrest caused huge controversy among the French police.

As a result, the officers throughout the country went on sick leave in order to stage a demonstration but a court last week denied the appeal against his detention.

The officer, in the court, admitted to firing a blast ball round, which reversed an earlier denial, however, he claimed that he did not witness anybody sustaining injuries. His lawyer added that there was no proof it was his round that had wounded Hedi.

The powerful police union, Alliance, said the ruling was “incomprehensible and very unfair”.

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