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Clashes in western France after police shoot young man dead

Groups of young people clashed with police in the western French city of Nantes late Tuesday after a 22-year-old man was shot dead by an officer during a police check.

Clashes in western France after police shoot young man dead
Firefighters work to put out a fire in a car in the Malakoff neighborhood of Nantes early on July 4, 2018. Photo: AFP
Cars were burned and a shopping centre partly set alight in the Breil neighbourhood as police confronted young people, some armed with molotov cocktails.
   
The circumstances in which the man was killed are being investigated by the police.
   
The incident occurred around 8:30pm (18:30 GMT) when police stopped a vehicle over an infraction, local police chief Jean-Christophe Bertrand said. 
 
The identity of the driver was “not clear and officers received orders to bring the driver to the police station.” The driver then hit and slightly injured a police officer, he added.
 
Photo: AFP
   
“One of his colleagues then fired, hitting the young man who unfortunately died,” he said.
   
Police sources confirmed the young man was wounded during a police check while in a vehicle after he “refused to comply” with police requests.
   
He was hit in the carotid artery and declared dead on arrival at hospital, the police sources said.
   
National police are investigating to clarify “the facts and determine in what circumstances the policeman used his weapon,” said Pierre Sennes, the public prosecutor for Nantes.
 
Photo: AFP
   
Steven, 24, who lives in the area, told an AFP journalist that he had “heard explosions” and headed to investigate.
   
“I saw everything burning. There were fires in the bins, the cars. They were breaking everything. It lasted ages,” he said, adding that things later 
calmed down.
   
Violence also broke out in two other sensitive areas, Dervallieres and Malakoff, where vehicles were also set on fire.
   
Police reinforcements are expected in Nantes, especially in the Breil neighbourhood, which was already on high alert after an incident last week possibly involving a military weapon, according to a source close to the case.

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POLICE

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

A Frenchwoman and a Spaniard were killed and nine other mountaineers were injured on Friday in an ice fall in southwest Switzerland, police said following a rescue attempt involving several helicopters.

Two mountaineers killed and 9 injured in ice fall in Swiss mountains

Police received calls at 6.20 am reporting that mountaineers had been caught up in falling seracs — columns of glacial ice formed by crevasses — on the Grand Combin, a glacial massif near the Italian border in the Wallis region.

Seven helicopters with mountain rescue experts flew to the scene, finding 17 mountaineers split among several groups.

“Two people died at the scene of the accident,” Wallis police said in a statement. They were a 40-year-old Frenchwoman and a 65-year-old man from Spain.

Nine mountaineers were airlifted to hospitals in nearby Sion and in Lausanne. Two of them are seriously injured, police said.

Other mountaineers were evacuated by helicopter.

The regional public prosecutor has opened an investigation “to determine the circumstances of this event”, the police said.

The serac fall happened at an altitude of 3,400 metres in the Plateau de Dejeuner section along the Voie du Gardien ascent route.

The Grand Combin massif has three summits above 4,000 metres, the highest of which is the Combin de Grafeneire at 4,314 metres.

The police issued a note of caution about setting off on such high-altitude expeditions.

“When the zero-degree-Celsius isotherm is around 4,000 metres above sea level, it is better to be extra careful or not attempt the route if in doubt,” Wallis police said.

“The golden rule is to find out beforehand from the mountain guides about the chosen route and its current feasibility.”

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