Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Rwandan singer amongst terror plot suspects

Read more

DEBATE

What's Putin's Plan? Kiev Accuses Russia of Terrorism

Read more

FOCUS

Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

Read more

WEB NEWS

Chile: Online mobilization to help Valparaiso fire victims

Read more

ENCORE!

Art, sex, money, memory and manga

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Spat over Iran's UN ambassador hampers thawing relations with US

Read more

FOCUS

China trade deal: Is Taiwan's identity under threat?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Call it a caretaker government'

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria's Battles

Read more

  • Frantic search for survivors of sunken South Korea ferry

    Read more

  • Crunch talks on Ukraine in Geneva

    Read more

  • Algeria heads to the polls: ‘This election has nothing to do with us’

    Read more

  • Man executed in Texas for 2002 triple murder

    Read more

  • Scandal-hit French doctor Jacques Servier dies at 92

    Read more

  • Belgian head of wildlife reserve shot in DR Congo

    Read more

  • Stagehand of God? Maradona's legendary goal inspires a play

    Read more

  • US rolls out red carpet for French critic of capitalism

    Read more

  • N. Korea not amused by London hair salon's Kim Jong-un ad

    Read more

  • Real Madrid beat old foes Barcelona to lift Copa del Rey

    Read more

  • France's new PM targets welfare in drive to cut spending

    Read more

  • Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

    Read more

  • Brazil club Mineiro cancel Anelka signing after no-show

    Read more

  • Syria 'torture' photos silence UN Security Council members

    Read more

  • Paris laboratory loses deadly SARS virus samples

    Read more

  • More than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped in northeast Nigeria

    Read more

  • New York police disband unit targeting Muslims

    Read more

  • 'Miracle girl' healthy after seven-organ transplant in Paris

    Read more

  • Paris police memo calling for Roma eviction ‘rectified’

    Read more

  • Burgundy digs into France's bureaucratic 'mille-feuille'

    Read more

  • French court drops ‘hate speech’ case against Bob Dylan

    Read more

  • Algeria rights crackdown slammed ahead of election

    Read more

  • Iraq closes notorious Abu Ghraib jail over security fears

    Read more

  • In ‘Tom at the Farm’, Xavier Dolan blends Hitchcock and homoeroticism

    Read more

France

Paris students intensify protests over deportations

© Rachel Holman

Video by William HILDERBRANDT

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-10-18

Thousands of high school students in Paris took to the streets for a second consecutive day on Friday to protest against the deportation of foreign pupils following the controversial expulsion of 15-year-old Leonarda Dibrani earlier this month.

High school students took to the streets of Paris in their thousands on Friday during a second consecutive day of protests against the deportation of foreign pupils, following the controversial expulsion of a 15-year-old Roma girl earlier this month.

Leonarda Dibrani was detained by police during a school trip on October 9 and deported to Kosovo along with her parents and five siblings – a case that has triggered widespread outrage and landed France’s Interior Minister Manuel Valls in hot water. Critics have lashed out at the “inhumane” way Dibrani was treated.

Days later another student, 19-year-old Khatchik Kachatryan, was also deported, but this time to Armenia. He was enrolled at Camille-Jenatzy, a professional high school in northern Paris.

Taking to the streets to express their anger at the deportations, protesting students gathered at the Place de la Bastille in the French capital at around 13:00 (11:00 GMT) on Friday to begin a march to the Place de la Nation, about 2km east, amid tight security.

The protests had began the day before, when students obstructed the entrances to several schools in Paris, protesting in front of the gates.

According to the local education authority, 14 schools in Paris were “disrupted” by Thursday's protests. The high school student union UNL, however, said that demonstrations had in fact been held at more than 30 schools in the capital and its suburbs.

‘Every child has the right to an education’

Several hundred students and adults also took part in a march that wound its way through the city from the eastern Place de la Nation. A small group of teenagers banged on drums while the crowd called for Valls to resign and shouted “Free Khatchik!”

“We’re here first of all because of Leonarda and Khatchik,” Laure Anderson, who is in her last year of high school, told FRANCE 24. “But we’re also here to express our disappointment in a leftist government that should be acting like a leftist government.”

François Fourn, a history and geography teacher at a central Parisian high school, said he had come to the demonstration to chaperone his students.

“My high school students wanted to protest against the deportations of their peers, so I came with them,” Fourn said.

“I am shocked that we are deporting students,” he added. “Every child has the right to an education, no matter their nationality, religion or background. Without exception. It’s unacceptable.”

Investigation launched

The furore over Dibrani’s deportation has heaped pressure on Valls, who some Socialist lawmakers have accused of betraying the left’s values with tough immigration policies that led to the girl’s arrest.

Valls has stepped up rhetoric against Roma migrants living in illegal camps in French cities as support for the far-right anti-immigration National Front has surged in opinion polls ahead of municipal and European elections next year.

On Wednesday, an investigation was launched into the legality of the deportation of the schoolgirl and her family.

Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault told parliament that Dibrani, now back in Kosovo with her family, would be allowed to return to France if the probe found that police had broken rules by arresting her on school property.

The police have said they were carrying out orders after the family’s application for political asylum was turned down on grounds of “insufficient prospect of social and economic integration” in France.

Dibrani, meanwhile, told French media this week that she felt ashamed at being detained in front of her schoolmates. She also said that she felt lost in Kosovo, and wanted to return to France.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2013-10-17

  • FRANCE - ARMENIA

    Khatchik Kachatryanon: Another student deported by France

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Roma schoolgirl's traumatic expulsion shocks France

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Leftists want chic Paris district to host Roma camp

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)