8 injured following Moroccan's murder

By Houda Filali-Ansary 5/30/2005

Eight people were injured last night in Perpignan in new clashes between the North African and the Gipsy communities following the murder of a North African, the second one in less than 10 days.

Hundreds of young North Africans took to the streets last night in the French city of Perpignan following the murder of a French-Moroccan. The man, whose last name is still unknown, had been shot four times outside his home in the Saint-Mathieu district around 7:30 p.m.

43-year-old Driss was the second North African to be murdered in the city in a single week. The previous Sunday, Mohamed Bey-Bachir, a 28-year-old French-Algerian, had been beaten to death by five Gypsies over a parking place. The murder had triggered clashes between the North African and the Gypsy communities for a whole week.

Last night's outbreak came as tempers were starting to calm down. Eight people were injured in yesterday's riots and 37 others arrested, announced local police sources. Two of the injured had been shot, the others suffered injuries from knives and broken glass bottles.

In addition, over 100 fires were started and 50 cars burned, leading most of the local police forces to spend the night in Perpignan's Cassanyes square to prevent both communities from clashing again.

Additionnal CRS anti riot police units were also called for reinforcement, from the cities of Toulouse, Marseille and Bordeaux. More…