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Crowd Fights Off Police Trying to Shut Down Rave

More than 2.5K attended an illegal, curfew-breaking event in France
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 1, 2021 4:30 PM CST

(Newser) – France sent more than 100,000 police officers around the country to keep an eye on New Year's Eve celebrations and make sure the 8pm COVID-19 curfew wasn't violated. It wasn't a complete success. An illegal rave in northwestern France drew about 2,500 people, who fought off police trying to shut down the event, France 24 reports. The crowd threw bottles and stones at officers and set a police car on fire, local police said. Several officers were reported to be injured. The rave, which was held in an empty warehouse, went on. Now officials are worried more coronavirus cases will result; France has 2.6 million so far, per Euronews, ranking it fifth in the world.

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Partiers said the Lieuron rave drew people from throughout France and elsewhere in Europe; many were still there Friday, watched by police. There wasn't much social distancing, one said. Police were able to break up an illegal party of about 300 in Marseille and fine more than 150 of them for violating the curfew. An aid group passed out masks at the Lieuron party and asked partiers not to share drinks or joints, per the AP. A volunteer said they're asking for understanding, saying that after months of confinement, they needed to cut loose. (Read more France stories.)

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