Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin attacked Thursday the "selective dignity" of athletes who denounced the assault by police officers of black producer Michel Zecler.
"Yes, I find that some have selective dignity", retorted on RTL the minister, questioned about the positions of leading sportsmen, including Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappé.
"We can also be particularly hurt by what our country represents, the French flag, France in general, when we see that a police commissioner, now, must have an iron splint instead of his arm because that she takes a paving stone (...). That a 50-year-old major, you saw the images, was beaten to the ground and that around him, rather than helping him, they took his phone and we film, "replied Gerald Darmanin, referring to officers injured during clashes on the sidelines of a demonstration in Paris on November 28.
Griezmann had tweeted "I hurt my France", accompanied by the Loopsider media video showing the brutal assault of the music producer by police in a studio in the 17th arrondissement of Paris.
Mbappé had denounced him "an unbearable video" and "inadmissible violence", adding "Stop racism", in the midst of controversy over the proposed law "global security" crystallized around its article 24 which provides, among other things, to penalize malicious dissemination images of law enforcement officers.
Other footballers like Samuel Umtiti, Benjamin Mendy or Wendie Renard were also outraged, such as basketball players Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier.
Tens of thousands of people demonstrated against the proposed law on November 28, leading the government to promise a rewrite of the controversial Article 24.
© 2020 AFP