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Paris police under investigation for mistreatment of migrants

France’s interior minister, Gerald Darmanin, ordered an internal police investigation after officers were filmed throwing migrants out of tents while evacuating a protest camp in Paris on Tuesday. 

The police were caught by journalists and activists shaking migrants inside tents until they tumbled out and resistors were abused by batons, according to the head of aid group Doctors Without Borders, Corinne Torre. 

The protestors were calling attention to the hundreds of migrants who were kicked out of another camp last week and have been sleeping on the streets out of desperation. Most of these migrants are from Afghanistan, Somalia, and Eritrea.

Aid groups and the government are focused on finding temporary accommodations for hundreds of migrants who were forcibly removed from the camps on the Place de la Republique on Monday night. 

The evacuation garnered public attentions amid tensions over a draft law intended to increase police powers and provide greater protection to all officers. It notably makes it criminal to publish images of officers with intent to cause them harm, a measure that has been hotly contested by civil liberties campaigners and media freedom groups. 

The interior minister described the evacuations were “shocking” and promised to make the results of the investigation public, an assertion that contrasts his defence of police officers in recent months and half-hearted response to severe violence enacted by the police at protests. 

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