French riot police are to stop using an explosive tear gas grenade that has maimed protesters, reports The Times.
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- French protests: the urgent need to ban use of maiming 'crowd control' weapons
- French riot police deploy assault rifles at 'yellow vest' demonstrations
- 'Yellow vests': government violence is stoking violence in the country
- UN condemns French police violence against 'yellow vests'
The grenade, which releases a cloud of tear gas with a powerful blast, is part of a crowd-control arsenal opposed by rights groups and some international bodies. Another police grenade, the OF-F1, was banned in 2017 after the death of an activist in a protest over a dam. Défenseur des droits, a rights group, says that France is the only European country to use explosive munitions against protesters.
The police use of more than 13,000 rubber bullets against protesters in three months last winter caused the United Nations’ human-rights commission to deplore “serious allegations of excessive use of force” and “disproportionate use” of so-called ‘non- lethal’ weapons by French police.
Read more of this report from The Times (subscription required).