French police want to get tougher on crime as public resists

Citizens are concerned about excessive police violence. Officers counter that they want fewer constraints on their work.

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Police want more power despite increasing public mistrust of their actions.

Police in France are demanding more rights to use force against the public, citing a rise in violence against them as they perform their duties. 

"We are dealing with a context of urban guerilla warfare, we are no longer in a situation of normal working conditions for the police, it's as if they are in military operations in a foreign country, when we are actually in France, simply doing our job," said Philippe Capon, a police union representative.

Some citizens are pushing back, saying police are already too aggressive. The death of a black man in police custody in July triggered criticism of police brutality and racism in France, and prompted demonstrations. The autopsy report of the victim, Adama Traore, labels 'asphyxiation' as the cause of death. His sister, Assa Traore, told TRT World that the state should be held accountable.

"Today, we are fighting for justice and truth, the case of Adam's death has become a state affair, because Adama died in police custody, in a symbolic space, which belongs to the state and the state should face its responsibility," she said. 

TRT World's Myriam Francois reports.

Source: 
TRTWorld