From the blog

FRANCE: Police Shooting Sets Off Unrest

The shooting death of a 17-year-old driver by police near Paris on Tuesday during a traffic check has triggered unrest in France after a 17-year-old driver was shot and killed by police near Paris on Tuesday during a traffic check.

The teenager, named as Nahel M, was shot at point-blank range as he drove off and crashed soon afterwards in what rioter described as ‘execution’.

Police said they had contained “sporadic episodes” of fresh violence. 

In Toulouse, protesters started a fire and threw stones at firefighters as they tried to put it out.

Demonstrators also clashed with police in the northern city of Lille.

French President Emmanuel Macron said the shooting of Nahel was “unforgivable” but his comments drew an angry reaction from police unions, who accused him of rushing to judge the officers involved.

The Alliance Police union called for them to be presumed innocent until found guilty, while the rival Unité SGP Police also spoke of political interventions that encouraged “anti-cop hatred”.

Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said he would be taking legal action against another group, France Police, after it published what he called an “unacceptable and abject” tweet seeking to justify the teenager’s killing.

Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne also weighed in, saying the police intervention “manifestly did not conform to the rules”.

The officer accused of killing him, who said he had fired because he felt his life was in danger, is in custody on charges of voluntary manslaughter.

A series of protests followed the shooting on Tuesday night in Nanterre, just west of Paris. Some 31 people were arrested following the disorder.

Nahel is the second person this year in France to have been killed in a police shooting during a traffic stop. Last year, a record 13 people died in this way.

According to French media, police initially suggested the teen drove his car towards them with the intention of hurting them.

But footage posted online and verified by the AFP news agency shows an officer pointing his weapon at the driver through his window and appearing to fire at point-blank range as he tries to drive off.

Authorities have opened two separate investigations following the teen’s death – one into a possible killing by a public official, and another into the driver’s failure to stop his vehicle and the alleged attempt to kill a police officer.