French Police Use Tear Gas, Water Canons to Stop Pro-Palestine Protests

11:03 - October 13, 2023
News ID: 3485555
PARIS (IQNA) – Police in Paris used tear gas and water cannons to disperse a rally in support of the Palestinians on Thursday as the French government has banned pro-Palestine protests amid Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip. 

Pro-Palestine rally in Paris


The French demonstrators on Thursday condemned the Israeli regime for killing civilians in Gaza and denounced President Emmanuel Macron for siding with the occupation.

Despite the ban, hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists gathered in central Paris, chanting "Israel murderer" and "Macron accomplice". They were met by riot police who tried to prevent them from joining forces, using tear gas and water cannons.

The protesters said they had the right to express their solidarity with the Palestinians, who have been under Israeli bombardment for a week. They also criticized the French authorities for allowing pro-Israel rallies but not pro-Palestinian ones.

"We live in a country of civil law, a country where we have the right to take a stand and to demonstrate. (It is unfair) to forbid for one side and to authorise for the other and that does not reflect the reality of Palestine", said Charlotte Vautier, 29, an employee at a non-profit.

The rally in Paris was one of several that were planned across France, following a call by Hamas, the Palestinian group that controls Gaza, for protests in the Muslim world. However, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin ordered local officials to ban all pro-Palestinian demonstrations, citing the risk of public disorder.

France has a large Muslim and Jewish population, and conflicts in the Middle East often spark tensions between the two communities. Darmanin said that the government had increased security measures for Jewish sites, such as schools and synagogues.

The Western support for the Israeli regime comes as the Gaza Strip has been targeted with thousands of Israeli bombs since Saturday. The air raids have killed at least 1,500 Palestinians, including 500 children and some 280 women, leaving more than 5,000 others injured. The regime has also cut water, food, fuel, and electricity supply to the besieged region, raising global concerns over a major humanitarian crisis in Gaza. 

The Israeli bombardment came after the Hamas resistance movement launched a multi-front and unprecedented offensive against the occupied territories on Saturday in what it named as Al-Aqsa Flood Operation. It said the operation was a response to the desecration of the al-Aqsa Mosque, increased violence against Palestinians, and crimes of occupation. 


Source: Agencies