Paris Police wives protest against violence

More than 100 wives and partners of police have protested in Paris against attacks on police following the killing of an officer on the Champs Elysees.

The Angry Police Wives group marched through the city two days after Xavier Jugele was shot twice in the head by criminal Karim Cheurfi.

Meanwhile French media said a man with a knife had been arrested at the Gare du Nord station. Police have not said if the incident is terrorism-related.

France goes to the polls on Sunday.

The Angry Police Wives are marching in support of police.

Other demonstration
Separately, riot police confronted marchers after a trade union demonstration in eastern Paris, which was calling for a “social first round” of voting. Police were pelted with objects and fired tear gas.

Candidates in the presidential election have been accused of exploiting the Champs Elysees attack politically.

Two other officers were wounded before Cheurfi was shot dead.

The killer had spoken about wanting to kill police but had no apparent link to Islamist radicalism, prosecutors said. A note defending so-called Islamic State (IS) was found near his body.

At the end of the pro-police demonstration, marchers released black balloons signifying police killed in the line of duty and pink balloons for the families they left behind.

Some were carrying placards saying “don’t touch my cop”, a twist on a well-known French anti-racism slogan.

One placard also said “enough police officers killed and burned”, referring not only to Mr Jugele’s death but also a firebomb attack on a police car carrying four officers by suspected drug dealers in a poor suburb of Paris last October.

Two of the officers were seriously wounded in the attack.

Police officers have also been hurt in recent protests over allegations of police brutality.

Last month three officers were injured in protest after a Chinese man was shot dead by officers. In February protesters attacked a police station amid widespread anger over the alleged rape of a young black man by French police.

Police were also attacked during widespread protests against a controversial labour law last year, with 29 officers injured in one protest in Paris alone.

The victim
Police officer Xavier Jugelé, 37, was an active campaigner for gay rights, French media report.

Originally from the Loire Valley region in central France, he had been serving in the capital since 2014.

On 13 November 2015, he was deployed to secure the area around the Bataclan concert hall after the IS attack.

When the venue reopened last November with a concert by Sting, Mr Jugelé was there again, telling the US’s People magazine: “I’m happy to be here… We’re here tonight as witnesses. Here to defend our civic values. This concert’s to celebrate life. To say no to terrorists.”

He was in a civil partnership and did not have children, reports say.

BBC/Sammie