After Mass Protests, France Backtracks on Controversial Law that Would Ban Filming Police

'La Republique en Marche' (LREM) parliamentary group president Christophe Castaner (C), flanked by 'Mouvement Democrate et Democrates apparentes' (Modem) parliamentary group president Patrick Mignola (L) and 'Agir Ensemble' parliamentary group president Olivier Becht (R) speaks during a press conference on the 'global security' draft law and the Article 24 which …

French President Emmanuel Macron’s government will rewrite a controversial law that would have banned members of the public from filming police officers.

The Macron government walked back the plans to implement the controversial “Article 24” of the “global security” law which would have made it illegal to publish video footage or the identities of officers online after massive protests over the weekend.

Former Interior Minister Christophe Castaner, head of Macron’s La République en Marche! (LREM/Republic on the Move) in the French parliament, announced that the government would be looking to rewrite the article entirely, Euronews reports.

The weekend’s riots, which were in opposition to the proposed law, were also in reaction to the beating of a black French music producer by police that was caught on video and spread across social media.

Four police officers were charged in relation to the incident on Monday, according to France24.

On Monday evening, current Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin spoke for around two hours to the French national assembly on the subject of police reform and outlined what he called the “seven deadly sins” of the police.

Among the so-called sins, was police basic training periods being too short and a claim that police lacked sufficient resources to renovate their buildings and upgrade their vehicle fleets.

At least 81 people were arrested over the weekend in Paris following the riots in opposition to the proposed security bill. The Interior Ministry estimated that as many as 130,000 people took part in protests in 70 cities, while organisers claimed as many as half a million participants.

Around 61 policemen were injured as a result of the riots, 23 of them in Paris as protesters clashed with officers and threw various objects including Molotov cocktails.

The StopLoiS SécuritéGlobale (Stop the Global Security Law) coalition, a network of trade unions, journalists, and human rights groups, organised the demonstrations and told French media: “It is the people of freedom who marched throughout France to tell the government that they do not want its ‘global security’ law… that they want to be able to film and broadcast the interventions of the police.”

Police brutality continues to be a major issue in France and has led to many riots in recent years, which have, in turn, led to attacks on police.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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