In order to prepare for a fifth night of rioting, French police sent reinforcements to hotspot areas on Saturday during the burial of the 17-year-old whose death by a police officer prompted the tumultuous demonstrations.
Police arrested 1,311 people overnight Friday to Saturday, the highest figure since the violent protests began over the point-blank killing by a policeman of Nahel M. in the Paris suburb of Nanterre on Tuesday.
Shops were ransacked and town halls attacked in various locations nationwide by gangs, often made up of teens organised on social media and armed with fireworks.
Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin told reporters that 45,000 members of the security forces would be deployed overnight Saturday to Sunday — the same number as the night before — but with additional forces and equipment sent to Lyon, Grenoble and Marseille which saw the worst rioting the previous night.
Numbers would be “considerably reinforced” in these cities “in order to completely restore republican order”, Darmanin said.