France anti-racism rally marks 40th anniversary of 1983 Equality March

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Forty years ago, French citizens of North African origin marched from Marseille to Paris between October 15 and December 3 to denounce discrimination and racism.

ANNOUNCEMENT

Hundreds of people took to the streets of Paris on Sunday to denounce the French government’s proposed immigration law and to commemorate the anniversary of the 1983 “March for Equality”.

According to French police, around 1,100 people gathered Sunday to mark the 40th anniversary of the 1983 March for Equality, the first national demonstration against racism in France.

Forty years ago, French citizens of North African origin marched from Marseille to Paris between October 15 and December 3 to denounce discrimination and racism.

Dominique Sopo, President of SOS Racism NGO, explained why it was important for people to come forward and join them.

“It is important to march 40 years later against racism and for equality because we are fighting battles that never stop. 40 years ago, young people, particularly from North African immigrant backgrounds, rose up to say, finally, we want to be fully part of this country. We want to reject racism, we want to be treated with equal dignity. And these are long-term battles. And so we must never stop marching.”

During this year’s protest, demonstrators also condemned the French government’s immigration bill which aims to strengthen and speed up the deportation process of foreigners deemed “a serious threat to public order.”

However, advocacy organizations say this threatens the rights of asylum seekers and other migrants.

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