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Coronavirus

Protest of Police Use-of-Force Held in Paris despite Virus Ban

PARIS — Thousands of people are defying a virus-linked police ban in Paris and have converged on the French capital's main courthouse for a demonstration to show solidarity with U.S. protesters and to denounce the death of a black man in French police custody.

The demonstration in Paris and similar protests in other French cities on Tuesday were organized to honor Frenchman Adama Traore, who died shortly after his arrest in 2016 and to support Americans demonstrating against the death of George Floyd’ in the U.S. state of Minnesota.

Paris police banned the gathering a few hours before it was supposed to start, citing virus restrictions forbidding gatherings of more than 10 people.

The circumstances of Traore’s death are still under investigation after four years of conflicting medical reports.

The lawyer for two of the three police officers involved says it didn't result from the conditions of his arrest but factors such as a preexisting medical condition.

Traore’s family says he died from asphyxiation because of police tactics — and that his last words were “I can’t breathe.”

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