France to ship particular forces to Guadeloupe after looting, arson

Deployment comes after an in a single day curfew did not quell violent protests in opposition to COVID-19 curbs.

France is sending dozens of police particular forces to revive order within the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe following rioting and looting amid protests in opposition to COVID-19 measures.

Speaking to reporters on Saturday, French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin mentioned France will ship about 50 members of the GIGN and RAID elite tactical forces of the gendarmerie and police to the abroad territory, the place shops have been looted, pictures fired at police, and 31 individuals had been arrested in a single day.

The further forces will enhance the variety of police and gendarmes out there in Guadeloupe to 2,250, Darmanin mentioned.

“The first message is that the state will stand firm,” he mentioned.

The deployment comes after days of unrest, with protesters gathering in a number of cities in defiance of an in a single day curfew imposed to quell the violence.

“The night was very turbulent,” a police supply instructed the AFP information company.

The safety forces recorded “some 20 incidents of looting or attempted robbery” within the seaside cities of Pointe-a-Pitre and Le Gosier, together with at a jewelry store, a financial institution, a betting store and a purchasing centre, the supply mentioned.

In the city of Saint-Francois to the east, “gendarmes coming out of the station were threatened by blazing projectiles”.

“Firearms were used against police forces in four different areas” throughout the island, the supply added, with one officer barely wounded after a stone hit him within the face.

A second supply inside the gendarmerie mentioned an armoury had been looted.

In the world of Le Petit-Bourg to the west, firefighters needed to put out fires in two cell phone shops, which had additionally been plundered.

Guadeloupe Prefect Alexandre Rochatte, who represents the French authorities on the archipelago, on Friday had imposed a curfew from 6pm to 5am following 5 days of civil unrest throughout which barricades burned within the streets and firefighters and medical doctors walked out on strike.

In a bulletin on Twitter referring to vandalism, Rochatte later mentioned that harm to electrical works near dams, particularly by one in Capesterre-Belle-Eau, was inflicting outages to many shoppers and warned it represented an electrocution threat.

Trade unions launched an indefinite strike on Monday to protest the obligatory vaccination of well being staff in opposition to COVID-19 and well being go necessities.

While most individuals in mainland France have now acquired two vaccination doses, charges in its abroad territories have lagged.

By November 16, some 46 p.c of adults in Guadeloupe had acquired at the least one jab of a vaccine in opposition to COVID-19.