16 Jun, 2020 by https://www.rt.com/
A video has emerged showing several French police officers round up a woman in a white medical robe during a health workers protest in Paris. Officers can be seen dragging her by the hair as she begs for help.
The shocking video, filmed at protest in the French capital on Tuesday, shows a policeman in full riot gear pulling the middle-aged woman by the hair and slamming her repeatedly against a tree in an apparent attempt to take her into custody.
As the visibly distraught woman is on the ground, backup officers rush to the scene and eventually force the kneeling protester back to her feet. As they escort her away, one of the officers can be seen dragging her by the hair.
The woman, whose forehead was bloodied in the showdown, can be heard shouting “please” and asking for ventolin, an inhaler used to stop a sudden asthma attack. “I have asthma,” she tells the officers as they proceed to arrest her, seemingly paying little attention to her pleas.
A woman who identified herself as the protester’s daughter took to Twitter to voice her outrage over the video, condemning the conduct by the arresting officers.
Imen Mellaz said that her mother is a nurse who worked long shifts at a hospital during the Covid-19 crisis, doing as many as “between 12 and 14 hours a day” for the past three months.
Mellaz added that her mother is 50 years old and has been suffering from asthma. She noted that she had been contacted by police, who assured her that her mother would be released from custody if she had not “done anything” before the disturbing scenes played out.
Mellaz insisted, however, that there was “no justification” for how her mother had been treated in the first place.
The nurse joined the protest in front of the Health Ministry to demand a pay raise, just like thousands of her colleagues who felt abandoned by the state and warned that the coronavirus has put the French health care system on the brink of collapse.
Some 30 people were arrested as about 18,000 protesters flocked to rallies in Paris on Tuesday to demand more resources for healthcare workers. The marches remained largely peaceful, but there were sporadic clashes between protesters and police, which the authorities blamed on “anarchists.” Protesters were seen throwing stones and glass bottles at the officers, and at one point overturning a car. Police responded with tear gas and batons.
Two cameramen for RT France received minor injuries during the clashes after being hit with stones. They were helped on-site by the medics.