France Deploys Armored Military Vehicles In Crackdown

( — The week-long riots that erupted throughout France last week were more subdued on Monday, in large part due to the Interior Ministry deploying 45,000 police plus armored vehicles and special forces to maintain order, Bloomberg reported.

On Sunday, French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin announced the expanded police presence after the riots reached a fever pitch last Friday, according to Reuters.

Over half of the 2,400 arrests during last week’s rioting occurred on Friday, with 1,311 rioters arrested. The Interior Ministry said the majority of those arrested were between the ages of 13 and 17, according to NBC News.

The violent unrest began after a 17-year-old known only as Nahel was fatally shot by a police officer after running a red light in the Paris suburb of Nanterre last Tuesday.

According to Nanterre prosecutor Pascal Prache, the officer shot Nahel because he feared that someone might get hit by his car. On Thursday, Prache said the officer has been charged with voluntary homicide and is being held in custody.

Despite President Emmanuel Macron’s appeals to parents to keep their children off of the streets, clashes between police and the young rioters continued into the weekend.

Nearly 90 arrests were made in Marseille after Mayor Benoît Payan called on the government to dispatch additional law enforcement to the southern port city where rioters were setting fire to barricades and hurling objects at police.

Another 719 arrests were made on Saturday following Nahel’s funeral in Nanterre according to the Interior Ministry.

By Monday, with additional police and armored vehicles deployed, the riots eased somewhat. According to the Interior Ministry, the number of arrests on Monday dropped to just 157, bringing the total arrests to 3,200.

In an interview with BFM TV on Sunday, Nahel’s grandmother called for an end to the nationwide riots, saying that the rioters are only using her grandson’s death as an excuse to cause violence, according to Reuters.

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