The Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed its confidence in France’s ability to overcome the current situation and tackle the unrest
The UAE on Saturday issued a statement expressing its full solidarity with France. It stressed the need to restore peace and order, and respect the rules and principles of law.
In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed its confidence in France’s ability to overcome the current situation and tackle the unrest. It noted that France is an example of a country that takes into account the interests of its people.
The ministry emphasised the UAE’s call for stability and security, as well as the protection of civil facilities and state institutions.
France’s Interior Ministry announced that in the latest night of violence, 1,311 people had been arrested around the country, where 45,000 police officers fanned out in a so-far unsuccessful bid to restore order. In the violence sparked by the teen’s death on Tuesday, some 2,400 persons have been arrested overall.
The protesters and rioters turned out on the streets of cities and towns, clashing with police, despite Macron’s appeal to parents to keep their children at home. About 2,500 fires were set and stores were ransacked, according to authorities.
The teen, identified only as Nahel, was shot during a traffic stop on Tuesday in the Paris suburb of Nanterre. Video showed two officers at the window of the car, one with his gun pointed at the driver. As the teenager pulled forward, the officer fired once through the windshield.
Rituals to bid farewell to Nahel began on Saturday with a viewing of the open coffin by family and friends and culminated with his burial in a hilltop cemetery in that town.
At the cemetery’s entrance, with central Paris visible in the distance, hundreds of people stood along the road to pay tribute to Nahel. The crowd carried his white casket above their heads and into the cemetery for the burial, which was barred to the media. Some of the men carried folded prayer rugs. Before the burial, prayers were held at a mosque.
Applause resounded as Nahel’s mother Mounia M., dressed in white, walked through the gate and toward the grave. Earlier in the week she told France 5 television that she was angry at the officer who shot her son, but not at the police in general.
“He saw a little Arab-looking kid, he wanted to take his life,” she said. “A police officer cannot take his gun and fire at our children, take our children’s lives,” she said. Race was a taboo topic for decades in France, which is officially committed to a doctrine of colorblind universalism. The family has roots in Algeria.
The police officer accused of killing Nahel was given a preliminary charge of voluntary homicide, meaning that investigating magistrates strongly suspect wrongdoing, but need to investigate more before sending a case to trial. Nanterre prosecutor Pascal Prache said that his initial investigation led him to conclude that the officer’s use of his weapon wasn’t legally justified.
Anger over Nahel’s death erupted in violence in Nanterre and in many major cities, including Paris, Marseille and Lyon, and even in the French territories overseas, where a 54-year-old died after being hit by a stray bullet in French Guiana.