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French authorities ban the transport and sale of fireworks ahead of Bastille Day

Indian soldiers march on the Champs Elysees avenue during a rehearsal for the Bastille Day parade in Paris, France, Monday, July 10, 2023.

France has prohibited the possession, transport and sale of fireworks ahead of Bastille Day celebrations amid fears of renewed unrest.

The country's national day which commemorates the storming of the Bastille fortress in Paris in 1789 - which gave way to the end of absolute rule and the start of the French Revolution - is traditionally marked every year with parades and fireworks displays.

However, President Emmanuel Macron's government has issued a decree banning the use of pyrotechnic articles and fireworks to prevent "the risk of serious public disorder".

The move follows six days of riots sparked by the shooting of a teenager during a routine police check in Nanterre, Paris in late June.

The killing of 17-year-old Nahel who had Algerian roots gave way to the worst case of urban violence since 2005 and reignited pent-up frustrations relating to allegations of systemic racism, unemployment and social inequalities.

Prime Minister Elizabeth Bourne said these were "sensitive days".

Almost 4,000 people were arrested across the country following Nahul's death, many public and privately owned buildings and vehicles were vandalised and fireworks were cited by police as the weapon of choice for many youths who participated in the demonstrations.

Authorities say the ban will not affect official municipal fireworks displays.

Posted on 10 Jul 2023 10:26 link