Gov­ern­ment de­fends heavy-handed po­lice tac­tics against stu­dents

DNA (Delhi) - - WORLD -

Paris: France’s gov­ern­ment on Fri­day de­fended the tac­tics of riot po­lice who forced sev­eral dozen de­tained high-school stu­dents to kneel in rows with their hands held be­hind their heads or in hand­cuffs af­ter vi­o­lent protests west of Paris.

Stu­dents this week have been block­ing ac­cess to scores of high schools across France in protest at Pres­i­dent Em­manuel Macron’s ed­u­ca­tion re­forms, just as the 40-year-old leader grap­ples with some­times-vi­o­lent demon­stra­tions over liv­ing costs. Videos and pho­tos of the stu­dents from two high schools in Val Fourre, a de­prived neigh­bour­hood out­side Mantes-La-Jolie, 60 kilo­me­tres west of Paris, went vi­ral on so­cial me­dia late on Thurs­day, prompt­ing pub­lic out­rage. “Over the past few days, the stu­dents have been joined by about 100 hooded youths armed with clubs and in­cen­di­ary de­vices and de­ter­mined to pick a fight with po­lice,” In­te­rior Min­is­ter Christophe Cas­taner told a news con­fer­ence.

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