Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets in cities across France to protest against a recent rise in antisemitic attacks. It comes amid a rise in anti-Jewish attacks in France, which is home to the world’s largest Jewish population outside of Israel and the US. The government has warned antisemitism is “spreading like poison” in France, despite the trauma still felt after 78,000 French Jews were deported to death camps, aided by the French collaborationist Vichy government, during the Nazi occupation in the second world war.
Paris has taken the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassador from Rome, in the worst crisis between the two neighboring countries since the second world war. Italy’s two deputy prime ministers, the far-right Matteo Salvini and Luigi Di Maio of the populist, anti-establishment Five Star Movement, have in recent months criticized the French president, Emmanuel Macron, on a host of inflammatory issues, from immigration to the gilets jaunes (yellow vest) anti-government demonstrations.
At least 10 people, including a baby, died after a fire engulfed an eight-story Paris apartment building just before dawn Tuesday, sending fleeing residents to the roof to escape the flames visible from the street. A 40-year-old female resident, said to have a history of psychiatric problems, was detained near the building in the quiet neighborhood as police opened an investigation into voluntary arson resulting in death. More than 30 people – including six firefighters – were injured in what authorities said is the French capital’s deadliest fire in over a decade.
Chérif Chekatt who killed three people and wounded a dozen others at a Christmas market in Strasbourg was killed by French police on Thursday. Chekatt initially opened fire on officers when they tried to question him. Chekatt’s death came after a widespread manhunt involving hundreds of soldiers, police officers, and anti-terrorist specialists.
French police have appealed for help from security forces in searching Strasbourg Christmas market shooting suspect Chérif Chekatt who killed two people and wounded others. Chekatt has a history of criminal convictions and entered Islamic extremism in prison. Police announced that if anyone sees the ‘dangerous’ suspect they should immediately call an emergency hotline.
Hundreds of police officers continue to search for the known suspect who killed three and wounded another twelve in a shooting in Strasbourg, France on Tuesday. The suspect escaped after exchanging fire with armed police and soldiers. An investigation has been opened by France’s counter-terrorism prosecutor and no motive has been identified.
French President Emmanuel Macron will address the country on Monday to respond to ‘yellow vest’ anti-government protesters who have been holding riots for weeks. Macron will also meet with trade unions and business leaders to ‘hear their voices, their proposals’ to encourage action. Macron’s crisis meeting is expected to yield measures to diffuse the unrest.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced that tourist sites in Paris will close on Saturday as a protective measure amid plans for violent protests from ‘yellow vest’ demonstrators. Authorities are preparing for the weekend riots by holding emergency meetings and readying thousands of police and security forces. Champs-Elysees shops and restaurants will also close.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced that plan fuel tax rises have been dropped from the coming year’s budget following violent protests by the ‘gilet jaunes’ (yellow jackets) in three major cities with others planned. The announcement came just a day after the government said the taxes would be postponed for 6 months.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced fuel tax rises have been postponed for six months following weeks of violent protests by the ‘gilets jaunes’ (yellow vests). Philippe said you would have ‘to be deaf or blind’ to miss the widespread anger. The move was significant coming from President Emmanuel Macron’s government criticized for being unempathetic.