Mr Darmanin said he had asked an internal police watchdog to investigate over the next 48 hours and had pledged to make the results of that investigation public. But the critics were not convinced.
“You import methods developed in Calais to Paris”, Médecins sans frontières replied to M. Darmanin on Twitter, referring to the northern port city where police have been accused of hostility and ill-treatment in the treatment of migrants trying to reach Britain from France.
In what has become a seemingly endless cycle in and around Paris, police routinely evacuate hundreds of migrants and raze their tents and shacks, theoretically to provide them with temporary accommodation. But the lack of emergency accommodation and the slowness of asylum procedures have left many people still living under bridges or on vacant lots.
Then, Monday evening, around 450 blue tents pushed up on the Place de la République. Aid organizations such as Doctors Without Borders said the goal was to protest authorities’ inability to provide housing for 700 to 1,000 migrants who were left to roam the streets after 3,000 people were evacuated during the week. last of a camp in Saint-Denis, a suburb. in the north of Paris.
Humanitarian organizations say migrants, many of whom are young asylum seekers from countries such as Afghanistan, Sudan or Ethiopia, are harassed and pursued by police.
On Monday evening, the hundreds of migrants were joined on the Place de la République by politicians, lawyers and left activists. Police quickly surrounded the tents and began to tear them down as the protesters shouted and laughed at them.