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France riots: The ‘double discrimination’ and racism fuelling and widespread looting and vandalism | World Information

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Anger, resentment, grief – that’s the message from Marseille.

In France’s second metropolis, deep-rooted frustrations have bubbled over into looting and vandalism.

Kaouther Ben Mohamed fights for higher rights for the poor. She says the destruction right here is gloomy however it’s not stunning given the frustration many residents really feel.

“There is a double discrimination in Marseille in comparison with the remainder of France,” she says.

“The primary is the color of your pores and skin and your surname. The second is the place you reside. For people who find themselves referred to as Sofiane or Mohammed, it is harder residing in a working-class space, getting access to faculties, lodging and getting a job.”

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Poverty, racism and medicines imply clashes with police aren’t uncommon right here, however this widespread looting is an escalation and a worrying signal.

The injury is a step-up as a result of the violence has penetrated the center of town quite than being contained within the poor estates on the perimeters and that speaks to the extent of anger persons are feeling.

“Nahel’s loss of life was the ultimate straw for individuals within the working-class areas and for younger individuals as a result of there are such a lot of different Nahels, there’s a lot different police violence,” Kaouther explains.

And so, this week, the crowds returned to the streets, undeterred by the tear gasoline and rubber bullets.

Nahel Merzouk was fatally shot by police

We watched as some defiantly taunted the police, holding glowing flares aloft.

On the sidelines, we noticed younger individuals lighting fires, burning no matter they might discover or ripping up street indicators as makeshift weapons.

Whereas many appeared motivated simply to make bother, others had include a message like Hamza, who says: “The police in France is racist.”

He says the violence is a backlash following years of police racism and discrimination.

“There’s numerous looting right here in France, as a result of what do they [the police] do? They shoot at us and other people loot for revenge,” he instructed me.

“Whenever you dwell in a district in France, they hit you. It is the identical on a regular basis… They hit you, they rob all the pieces you’ve gotten after which they throw you out. It is all the identical if you happen to’re Arab, black, or Chinese language. It is at all times the identical,” he mentioned.

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Social media ‘essential’ to protests

Learn extra:
Burning car used in ram-raid attack on mayor’s home in ‘assassination attempt’
The Champs Elysees was saved from looting – but only by a massive show of force

On Friday, the UN rights workplace referred to as on France to deal with racism within the police.

“This can be a second for the nation to noticeably handle the deep problems with racism and discrimination in regulation enforcement,” spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani mentioned.

France rejected the accusation.

Simply after we spoke to Hamza, we watched as police dragged a protestor roughly to the ground and arrested him in entrance of a livid crowd.

Scenes like this may not assist construct belief however neither will a video which emerged reportedly displaying rioters looting about 20 automobiles.

The taking pictures of a youngster sparked the unrest in Marseille.

Now, lengthy held divisions proceed to gas it.

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