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Wednesday, May 22, 2024  
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A show of fireworks over Eiffel Tower for France National Day

The Bastille Day celebrations follow recent violent protests
AFP
Fireworks explode next to the Eiffel Tower as part of the annual Bastille Day celebrations in Paris, on July 14, 2023. (Photo by Geoffroy VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)
AFP Fireworks explode next to the Eiffel Tower as part of the annual Bastille Day celebrations in Paris, on July 14, 2023. (Photo by Geoffroy VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)

Fireworks lit up Eiffel Tower as France celebrated Bastille Day, the national day of France on Friday with national anthems for the national holiday in Paris.

A huge crowd including tourists and Parisians gathered on Friday night to witness the breathtaking fireworks, which continued for around 30 minutes.

Bastille Day in France has long been synonymous with grand fireworks displays over towns and villages, as dancing crowds celebrate the country’s national day.

The annual Bastille Day festivities, which mark the storming of the Bastille prison at the start of the French Revolution, kick off with a traditional military parade in the morning that see over thousands of people sweep down the Champs Elysees.

The country celebrated the national day on July 14, amid a political crisis after the recent riots over the killing of 17-year-old Nahel Merzouk in Paris.

The most intense urban clashes in nearly two decades saw thousands of cars torched, public property destroyed and over 3,700 people arrested, many of them minors.

Some towns in France cancelled their traditional firework displays out of fear of violence and buses and trams were to stop running in the Paris region.

“Can you believe that in the great democracy of France, we are giving up on our national day because of the fear generated by potential violence or potential riots by some people?” far-right opposition leader Marine Le Pen said on Wednesday.

She called the government measures “an admission of a total loss of confidence in the state”.

With input from agencies…

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Nahel Merzouk