Video images of police beating Black man are 'shameful', says Macron

WION Web Team
Paris, France Published: Nov 28, 2020, 08:04 AM(IST)

Emmanuel Macron Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

French authorities on Friday detained the four police officers suspected of beating and racially abusing a black music producer in Paris.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Friday that images of a Black man being beaten up by Paris police were "shameful" for France.

He also said he had asked the government to come up with proposals to restore public's confidence in the police and to fight against all forms of discrimination.

French authorities on Friday detained the four police officers suspected of beating and racially abusing a black music producer in Paris.

Video carried by the Loopsider website shows how music producer Michel Zecler was repeatedly beaten by officers for several minutes and subjected to racial abuse as he tried to enter his music studio last weekend.

Macron, in a statement on his Facebook page, called the incident an "unacceptable attack" and asked the French government to come up with proposals to "fight against discrimination".

"France must never allow hate or racism to spread," Macron said.

A presidential official said earlier Friday that Macron was "very shocked" by the images which have sparked fresh accusations of systemic racism in the French police force.

In one of the videos on Loopsider a neighbour who filmed the scene from above said a plainclothes policeman punched a kneeling Zecler in the face "maybe seven times".

The policeman "hit him so hard that his hand hurt", the witness said.

The incident has raised questions over the future of Paris police chief Didier Lallement, already in the spotlight after the controversial forced removal of a migrant camp in Paris earlier in the week.

It also put the government on the back foot as it tries to push through new security legislation that would restrict the right of the media to publish the faces of police officers.

The four officers, all men, were detained for questioning on Friday.

Also read | France: Policemen detained after they beat black man

The officers, who had already been suspended from duty, were being held at the National Police Inspectorate General (IGPN), and prosecutors opened an investigation into violence by a person in authority and false testimony.

Three of the four were being questioned on suspicion of "violence with a racist motive" committed intentionally in a group, prosecutors said. The fourth is being questioned on suspicion of using violence but is not accused of racism.

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