What happened to the young kneeling, surrounded by the police, Mantes-la-Jolie? - Release

Question posed by Jerome on 12/06/2018

Good morning,

Many of you ask us to authenticate a video broadcast by several Twitter accounts on Thursday evening. We see dozens of young people kneeling, hands over their heads, surrounded by policemen equipped with anti-riot equipment (helmets, batons and shields).

This is the Twitter account of the Observatory of Police Violence who was among the first to share this video. Contacted by is buzzing, explains that he has recovered this document on another Twitter account, which belongs to a policeman. This last one would have eliminated the video immediately after sharing it, according to Violences Policières. Contacted by is buzzingthe official did not want to give the origin of this document. Its authenticity is however without question. Many other videos circulating online show the same scene. Like this:

We also see some policemen surrounding young people kneeling in the same place in this video of the Actu 78 site.

122 arrested at noon

According to sources, the scene takes place on Thursday 6 December in Mantes-la-Jolie, north-west of Paris. For several days, the situation in the city of Yvelines was tense between the young and the police.

After the release of the video and the indignant reactions it provoked, the Ministry of the Interior reacted by sending a press release at 11:30 pm on Thursday: "Violent clashes between police and individuals in the neighborhood of Val-Fouré, near the Lycée Jules-Saint-Exupéry, at 12.20, 122 were arrested and placed in custody for participation in a group to prepare for voluntary violence or destruction or degradation", according to the Beauvau site, which adds: "37 of the gifts, most of them hooded, were found carrying sticks, baseball bats and tear gas containers." The ministry, which welcomes "no wounds" has been identified ends with this justification: "The arrest of such a large number of people required additional security measures".

The time and place coincide with those given by a witness on the scene contacted by CheckNews. However, this explains that among the young kneeling "There were people passing by, people who were not even part of the event or just spectators." According to this testimony, most of the people on their knees tried, before being arrested, to take refuge in a local Restos du Coeur. On the images of the Mantes Actu site, we see a truck with the colors of the association next to high school students.

According to AFP, which writes that the Mantes-la-Jolie operation mobilized 70 policemen, the Versailles prosecutor announced that a total of 189 young people, aged 12 to 20, were placed in custody in all Yvelines this Thursday, December 5th.

Cédric Mathiot


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Fabien Leboucq

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