Protests rock France after police shooting of teenager

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The French police are the most armed among advanced economy countries.

About 260,000 French law enforcement officers, including national police, gendarmerie and municipal police, have nearly 500,000 firearms between them, according to Small Arms Survey estimates.

That is about 765 police guns per 100,000 civilian population compared to just over 300 per 100,000 in the US, according to figures by the Switzerland-based research project.

Germany, with its higher population, has a slightly smaller number of police officers as well as police firearms.

Globally, the country with the highest share of law enforcement guns per population is Belarus, at 1,745 per 100,000 civilians.

When France introduced emergency laws following November 2015 terrorist attacks by the Islamic State in Paris, police allegedly carried out thousands of raids and house arrests, breaking into mosques, handcuffing people or pointing firearms at them, often based on their perceived ethnicity alone, according to Amnesty International.

A 2016 survey by the French Ombudsman found that 53% of men perceived as Black and 49% of men perceived as Arab had been stopped by the French police at least once, against only 17.5% of White men.

More than one in five Arabic men and one in eight Black men said they were stopped more than five times in five years.


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