SARCELLES, France (AP) — Pro-Palestinian French youth defying a ban on a protest against Israel’s Gaza offensive clashed with police Sunday, setting fire to cars, pillaging stores and throwing stones in a Paris suburb.
Police, backed by a helicopter overhead, responded with tear gas and shots from non-lethal guns during hours of unrest in the northern suburb of Sarcelles, home to a large Jewish community.
The unrest was the second time in two days that pro-Palestinian demonstrations in France turned violent. The demonstration, like the one in Paris on Saturday, had been banned to ensure peace.
France has Western Europe’s largest Muslim and Jewish populations, and crises in the Middle East, like the one triggered by the Gaza offensive, often spill into France.
The clashes came hours after France honored some 13,000 Jews rounded up 72 years ago, most kept in a cycling stadium before being sent to Auschwitz.
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