France descends into anarchy as violence explodes across country while Emmanuel Macron parties with Elton John

Emmanuel Macron (inset) attended an Elton John concert while chaos continued in France

Emmanuel Macron (inset) attended an Elton John concert while chaos continued in France

Instagram/David Furnish/Reuters
Jack Walters

By Jack Walters

Published: 30/06/2023

- 08:16

Updated: 30/06/2023

- 12:25

The French President attended a Sir Elton John concert during the 76-year-old’s farewell tour

Emmanuel Macron partied the night away at an Elton John concert last night, while France was engulfed in a third night of violent riots.

Sir Elton’s partner David Furnish uploaded a photo on his Instagram account with the 76-year-old singer, French President and his wife Brigitte Macron “backstage in Paris” on Thursday.

Macron has often been accused of being out of touch with French voters, with opinion polls indicating a significant swing towards National Rally leader Marine Le Pen.

The French President’s latest sighting will likely do little to limit concerns about his hubristic nature.

Protests have rocked France ever since teenager of North African origin, later identified as Nahel M, was shot in the chest at point-blank range on Tuesday morning.

French police stand in position as fireworks go off during clashes with youthFrench police stand in position as fireworks go off during clashes with youth


He was killed after allegedly refusing to comply with a vehicle stop-check.

Footage from the shooting appeared to contradict claims initially made by officers which suggested the driver attempted to run them over.

The fatal incident sparked outrage across France as 40,000 officers were deployed on Thursday to quell the violence.

Five thousand officers descended on the suburbs of the French capital after 170 police were injured and 180 people were arrested overnight on Wednesday.

Macron convened a crisis cabinet meeting on Thursday which saw the 45-year-old lambast violence by protesters as “unjustifiable”.

French President Emmanuel Macron speaking at a recent press conference

French President Emmanuel Macron


Macron has rejected opposition calls to impose a state of emergency amid boiling tensions.

Cars have been set alight, police have been attacked with fireworks, shops have been looted and state buildings have been targeted.

The French President told Interior Ministers: “The last few hours have been marked by scenes of violence against police stations, but also schools and town halls … against institutions and the Republic.”

However, Macron also labelled the fatal shooting as “inexplicable and unforgivable”.

Sir Elton John waving

Sir Elton John is holding his farewell tour at the age of 76


A 38-year-old policeman has been charged with voluntary homicide following Nahel’s death.

A spokesperson from the National Gendarmerie confirmed hundreds of arrests were made across France on Thursday night.

Violence witnessed in Paris has been emulated across France, including in Lille, Toulouse, Amiens, Brest, Tours and Dijon.

Nantes and Bordeaux have also experienced unrest.

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