Protesters carry placards censuring French governmentís new security law that seeks to protect police officers while engaging in brutal force against protesters. (Photo by AFP)
French President Emmanuel Macron has described the beating of a black man by a police officer in the county as "shameful" for France amid persisting protests against racism and police brutality.
Macron, who has sparked major controversies recently over his proposed "security bill" to safeguard police brutality and making derogatory statements against Islam and Muslims, further declared - ironically - on his Facebook page Friday that he had also called on his government to devise plans to restore the publicís confidence in the police and to fight against all forms of discrimination.
His claims came as a French police watchdog launched a probe into the latest case of police officers brutality beating a black man over the weekend that was caught on camera and circulated online.
The video footage of the incident, which shows the violent arrest of a music producer over not wearing a mask on Saturday, also made news headlines on French TV channels.
According to French media reports, three police officers followed the victim inside his music studio and repeatedly punched and beat him and others inside with a truncheon and then threw a tear gas grenade into the building to force everyone to get out.
The development came as French police had already come under widespread criticism earlier in the week after people posted videos on social media showing officers beating protesters as they cleared a refugee camp in central Paris.
That incident followed Macronís move to propose a controversial security bill that restricts the publication of images of on-duty police officers.
The lower house of the French parliament on Tuesday passed the legislation, which will head to the Senate in December for final passage and enactment.
The proposed legislation has sparked outrage and criticism among journalists and human rights groups across the country and the European Commission, which said that journalists must be able to "work freely and in full security."
Protest rallies were also held in Paris with the participation of representatives of the media, and "yellow vest" protesters.
Macron also sparked controversy and global anger among the worldís nearly two billion Muslims after he publicly attacked Islam in defense of the publication of derogatory cartoons of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
He defended the "right to blaspheme" after controversial French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo republished the sacrilegious cartoons in October.
The French president further made controversial remarks about "Islamist separatism," which according to him threatens to take control in some Muslim communities around France.
He was then censured last week by a major Muslim civil rights group in the US for issuing an ultimatum to Muslim leaders across France to proclaim that Islam is an "apolitical religion."
Blasting Macron for the move, the Council for American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said, "The French government has no right to tell Muslims or any other religious minority how to interpret their own faith."
It further pointed to Franceís long history of oppressing its Muslim population, adding: "Over the past 20 years, France has implemented numerous laws designed to limit and punish the free exercise of religion, especially among Muslims."
"France has banned students, teachers, and public servants, from wearing visible signs of their faith, including hijabs, at school or at work," it said.