France’s capital reels after wave of terror attacks protests turn violent

In Belgium, protesters who had gathered outside the offices of the federal government, shouted insults and hurled water bottles at government employees gathered inside the building. In the rest of the country, angry and disorderly demonstrators set cars on fire, blocked roads, and attempted to block the approach to the Parliament, as well as the main rail crossing between Brussels and the French-speaking province of Wallonia. According to witnesses, several people were injured in the clashes, including a policewoman and a reporter for Radio Television Belge.

Clashes with police ensued. In Belgium, as in France, demonstrations in support of a symbolic vote on being able to “lock in” and “lock out” people at their homes under a future terror attack. In Paris, protests turned violent again on Friday, as hundreds of rioters smashed store windows and set cars on fire.

In France, the “Aix a Telelexs” protests were intended to counter the opposition’s demand for tighter security measures that would be needed to allow police to forcefully evacuate people without their consent. Some protesters took matters into their own hands, vandalizing government buildings with spray paints. The demonstration quickly turned violent. “We won’t stop until we get our basic rights,” one protester told journalists. “We don’t want a gun. We want a dignified life, we don’t want a police state.”

In Strasbourg, both protests and counter-demonstrations, where there were reports of attacks on police officers.

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