Paris Hub

Skinhead Attack on French Gay Rights Activist Clément Meric Caught on Video: REPORT

Though none were initially thought to exist, French police reportedly have surveillance video which documents the fight with skinheads that killed gay rights activist Clément Meric in Paris three weeks ago. A radio station, RTL, reported on the existence of the video, The Local reports.

MericMeric was killed after an angry exchange of words between left-wing activists and right-wing skinheads when they met by chance at a private clothing sale in an apartment on Rue Caumartin in the 9th arrondissement of Paris on June 5th.

As the confrontation escalated, Meric was punched unconscious. He was pronounced brain dead in hospital the following day.

It was initially believed that there were no CCTV images of the attack, but now it has emerged that a street surveillance camera belonging to transport company RATP, captured the fatal clash.

According to RTL, the video appears to show that Meric confronted his attacker, apparently intending to strike him. As he approached, the alleged attacker turned and threw a punch, striking Meric in the face. The blow knocked him unconscious.

He immediately fell to the ground but did not receive further punches and kicks as he lay on the ground as was initially believed, RTL claims.

Listen to the RTL claims (in French), AFTER THE JUMP...

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Gay Film Posters Too Hot for the Parisian Suburbs

Linconnu_du_lacPosters for the gay French thriller L’Inconnu Du Lac (Stranger By The Lake), which screened at Cannes, are being pulled by French municipalities because of its depiction of gay love, Deadline reports:

But on the eve of its release in France, where expressions of sexuality are de rigueur and where gay marriage was recently legalized, the film’s advertising (left) proved too much for some. In the Parisian suburbs of Versailles and Saint-Cloud, a series of promotional posters was pulled at the request of the individual town halls, ad firm JC Decaux told AFP. The mayor’s office in Saint-Cloud said it had been “harassed” by phone calls and emails about the poster since it went up last week. Versailles says it did not contact JC Decaux, but a rep told French media it was understandable that the image “could shock people who find themselves disarmed by posters in the street that address sexuality.”

Check out the trailer here.

Eight People Held in Connection to Beating Death of Gay Rights Activist Clement Meric


Eight far-right extremists are being held in connection to the beating death of gay rights and anti-fascist activist Clement Meric on Wednesday night, the Guardian reports:

MericThe interior minister, Manuel Valls, blamed "an extreme right group" for the murder. He said there had been a "dangerous discourse" in France for several weeks, a nod to the heated row over same-sex marriage and violent skirmishes on the fringes of the anti-gay marriage movement and demonstrations.

The leftwing former presidential candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon said the fact that Marine Le Pen's far-right Front National, which has increased its scores in elections and now has two MPs, had become normalised and "banal" had allowed all types of extreme-right movements to flourish.

The hard-left Parti de Gauche warned of "the fascist horror which has killed right at the heart of Paris", while some of Meric's fellow activists called his death "a political murder".

Le Pen said the attack had nothing to do with her party and the FN had "no contact, near or far" with Meric's attackers.

Serge Ayoub, a former skinhead leader in Paris once known as "Batskin" for his baseball bat, and now linked to the extreme-right group Jeunesses Nationalistes Revolutionnaires (Nationalist Revolutionary Youth) denied any members of his group were responsible for Meric's death.

Thousands have joined demonstrations against fascism in France following the horrific incident.

Watch reports from Euronews and Al Jazeera on the reactions, AFTER THE JUMP...

Clement Meric Seen Holding 'Homophobia Kills' Banner at March: VIDEO
18-Year-Old Gay Rights Activist Brain Dead After Attack by Skinheads in Paris: VIDEO

Continue reading "Eight People Held in Connection to Beating Death of Gay Rights Activist Clement Meric" »

French Gay Rights Activist Clement Meric Seen Holding 'Homophobia Kills' Banner at March: VIDEO


This morning we reported on the horrific attack on 18-year-old French progressive activist who is brain dead after an attack by a group of three neo-Nazi skinheads in Paris last night.

Video has emerged of Meric marchiing in an April demonstration in Paris, carrying a banner reading "homophobia kills".

At least one prominent French activist Pierre Bergé implicated the anti-gay marriage movement known as "Manif Pour Tous" for the attack on Meric.

Watch the video, AFTER THE JUMP...

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18-Year-Old Gay Rights Activist Brain Dead After Attack by Neo Nazi Skinheads in Paris: VIDEO


Clément Méric, an 18-year-old student at Sciences Po in Paris,and a well-known progressive activist, was beaten by a group of three skinheads near the Saint-Lazare train station in Paris on Wednesday night and is now brain dead, the Guardian reports:

2_mericNo suspects have been arrested, and Valls told reporters at the scene of the attack – a crowded, pedestrianised area with cafes and chain stores – that finding them is the top priority. It was unclear how the fight developed and how many people were involved. Political tensions are high in France after months of protests against legalising gay marriage, that sometimes ended with troublemakers from the extreme right clashing with police.

The Local reports:

A number of eyewitness reports, as well as a police source quoted by TF1 television, indicate that a group of left-wing activists had gone clothes shopping on Wednesday evening on rue Caumartin in the 9th arrondissement of Paris.

After far-right activists entered the same shop, there was an angry exchange of words and insults. When the group including Meric left the store, the extreme-right group had "brought reinforcements."

The victim was hit by a man wearing what appeared to be knuckle dusters, according to initial reports.

3_mericMeric's activism for The Party of the Left encompassed a range of progressive causes, including, apparently, gay rights.

The Local adds:

French industrialist and pro-gay marriage activist Pierre Bergé has caused a stir by implicating the anti-gay marriage movement, known as  'Manif Pour Tous' (Demo for all) in the
attack on Méric.
"Despite everyone who's insulting me, I say again: the Manif pour tous accepted into their ranks these fascists who killed Clément. For them to reflect on."

Watch a Euronews report on the murder, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Thousands Rally In Paris Against Gay Marriage: VIDEO

Screen Shot 2013-05-26 at 6.35.43 PM

In anticipation of the upcoming wedding ceremonies, tens of thousands of anti-gay marriage protesters rallied in central Paris earlier today. The Guardian reports on the march and the clashes between demonstrators and riot police:

At least 150,000 protesters converged on Paris, marshaled by more than 4,500 police who were deployed after the government warned of a risk of violence and disruption.

Riot police evicted about a dozen far-right activists who used ladders to climb on to the roof of the Socialist party headquarters and unfurled a banner saying "Hollande resign".

The night before the demonstration, 50 people were arrested after chaining themselves to metal barriers they had placed in the middle of the Champs Elysées and firing smoke canisters. A van carrying masks, banners and smoke bombs was seized by police.

The reform has sparked months of bitter political division over the issue. On Tuesday, a far-right historian shot himself at the altar of Notre Dame cathedral after leaving messages in which he denounced gay marriage.

The marriage equality law, signed by French president François Hollande last week, will go into effect on Wednesday. The move makes France the ninth country in Europe and the 14th globally to legalize marriage equality.

Watch a news report on the anti-gay protest, AFTER THE JUMP...

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