The French may well be glad to see the back of a year that saw France make world headlines – but not the sort of headlines they would want. November witnessed the worst spate of social unrest since the nationwide car-burning frenzy of 2005. President Nicolas Sarkozy called those responsible for the recent riots “yobs and traffickers.” Not everyone agreed. Lamia Belassen is a 17-year-old high school student from Paris who’s unhappy with the new reputation building around France’s young people. She’s part of a youth group organized by the city and told Radio France International’s Sarah Elzas that stereotypes are being created.
In Poland teenagers cannot imagine life without the web. After all personal computers were almost common place when they were born. Does that mean that they’re blasé though? And what are the reasons why they go online?
We’ve heard about gun violence and about school bullying. In France youth have been blamed for a lot of public violent events in the past few years, from a recent riot that broke out in a Paris train station, to the weeks of riots in 2005 in the Paris suburbs. Lamia Belassen is a 17 year old high school student in Paris who is part of a youth group organized by the city. Sarah Elzas asked her what she thought about the depiction of violent French youth.
Gangster culture is becoming more and more popular around Europe, a leading Dutch MP in the Netherlands is now calling for new rules to tackle gangster culture in youth prisons. He wants uniforms to be re-introduced and says expensive designer clothing and jewellery must be banned. It's being called a bling-bling ban - but the MP in question says he's deadly serious about taking a harder line on young criminals. Radio Netherlands' Andy Clark reports for Network Europe from the Hague.
Almost a year after France's suburban riots, police are warning of a new upsurge of violence in the country's poorer districts. Policemen were stoned and beaten by gangs of youths in three separate incidents over the past three weeks. In the latest one, officers were ambushed and had to fire their hand weapons in the air to escape. The growing defiance against law enforcement authorities is a sign that few lessons have been drawn from last year's troubles on both sides, and that little has been done to improve the lives of immigrants in France's derelict and isolated housing estates.
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