As the French government comes under increasing pressure to respond to accusations of racism in the police force, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner has announced that “the method of strangling the neck will be abandoned and will no longer be taught in police academies ”.
He said that during an arrest, “it will now be prohibited to push on the neck or neck.”
“No arrests should endanger lives,” he said on Monday.
Castaner has stopped banning another technique – pressing the chest of a prone suspect, who has also been blamed for leading to asphyxiation and possible death.
African-American George Floyd died on May 25 after a white Minneapolis policeman punched his knee in the neck for several minutes, even after he stopped responding.
Three days later, another black man twisted in the street in Paris when a white policeman pressed his knee to the neck during an arrest.
French lawmakers have called for a ban on such practices, and the techniques have also drawn criticism in other countries.
Several protests have taken place in France over the past week, sparked by the death of Floyd, who has fueled anger around the world.
President Emmanuel Macron has so far remained unusually silent on both Floyd’s death and protests in France.
Macron’s office said it had met with the Prime Minister and other senior officials over the weekend, and asked Castaner to “speed up” plans to improve police ethics originally promised in January.
Castaner acknowledged that there were racist police officers and promised “zero tolerance” for racism in the force in the future.
He ordered the systematic suspension of the police on suspicion of racist acts and language, in addition to criminal prosecution.
“Racism has no place in our society and even less” among the police, he said.
Australian Associated Press