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France seeks to ban far-right groups after weekend violence

AFP
AFP - [email protected]
France seeks to ban far-right groups after weekend violence
The reception hall in Crepol, southeastern France where Thomas was stabbed. Photo by OLIVIER CHASSIGNOLE / AFP

France's interior minister said on Tuesday he would ask for three right-wing extremist groups to be dissolved following violent demonstrations over the weekend.

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Gérald Darmanin told the France Inter broadcaster that he was targeting a group called Division Martel and two others whose names he did not give.

The French government called for calm after the killing of a teenage boy at a village dance party this month was followed by violent demonstrations by the extreme right.

The death of the 16-year-old, named only as Thomas, has been seized upon by the far-right, who have portrayed the killing as symbolic of increasingly insecure conditions in French society.

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Around 100 extreme-right activists travelled to the nearby town of Romans-sur-Isère on Saturday, a police source said.

They were looking for a fight with young people from the La Monnaie neighbourhood, where some suspect the perpetrators of the November 19th killing live, police said.

READ ALSO How much of a threat are violent far-right activists in France?

Another far-right gathering in Romans was dispersed by police on Sunday.

A total of around 30 people have been arrested.

"I will propose that a number of small groups are wound up," Darmanin said.

"There is a mobilisation within the extreme right that would have us tip into civil war," Darmanin said.

An estimated 3,300 people in France belong to far-right movements, of whom 1,300 are on a police watchlist, according to a recent parliamentary report.

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Susan KIMBER 2023/12/03 13:42
What about banning Islamist groups - far more prevalent and dangerous that these so-called "far-right groups"?

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