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Justice for Nahel

Statement by Sotsialniy Rukh (Social Movement)

Tuesday 4 July 2023, by Sotsialnyi Rukh

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The murder of 17-year-old Nahel by a police officer has sparked a veritable revolt among young people in France. This murder is just one in a long and sad list of crimes committed by the French police, which particularly affect young people whose parents come from former or current French colonies (Algeria, Africa, Martinique, etc.). Two weeks before Nahel’s death, a 19-year-old Guinean was killed by a police officer on 19 June as he left for work (Angoulême).

On 30 June, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights denounced the "profound problems of racism and racial discrimination in the [French] police".

What’s more, a 2017 law allows the police to make extensive use of weapons, which has practically become a "licence to kill". At a deeper level, young people in France, particularly those perceived as black or Arab, are experiencing social distress. Victims of discrimination in employment, housing and access to leisure activities, these young people are subjected on a daily basis and for no reason to police checks that are often humiliating.
A resident of Marseille (southern France) made the right diagnosis: "Young people locked up in ghettos, with no social prospects, are in the process of making a revolution". The current riots in France are reminiscent of the race riots in Los Angeles in 1992 following the police beating of Rodney King and the murder of George Floyd in 2020.

For years, young people have been subjected to racism, discrimination and violence on a daily basis. This cannot continue.

As an internationalist organisation, Sotsialnyi Rukh declares its total solidarity with French youth in their struggle for dignity and rights.
No to racism and all forms of discrimination.

3 July 2023

Source: Sotsialnyi Rukh Facebook page. Translated by ENSU.


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