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PM denounces Jewish-Muslim conflicts in France

July 20, 2014

PARIS (AP) — French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has vowed not to allow conflicts between the nation’s Jews and Muslims to erupt, even if it means banning protests.

Valls spoke at a memorial ceremony on Sunday for the more than 13,000 Jews rounded up in the Paris region 72 years ago, with most held at a cycling stadium, known as the “Vel d’Hiv,” before being sent to Auschwitz. The “Vel d’Hiv roundup” was among the darkest days for French Jews in Nazi-occupied France.

A day earlier, pro-Palestinian demonstrators defied a Paris protest ban to denounce Israel’s offensive in Gaza and clashed with police. A week earlier, two synagogues were attacked by protesters.

Valls said, “France will not allow provocations to feed ... conflicts between communities.”

France has Europe’s largest Jewish and Muslim communities.

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