French police protest working conditions after shooting

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French police protest working conditions after shooting
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 14: French policemen set off smoke bombs as approximately 7500 French police officers demonstrate to call for better working conditions in front of the Justice ministry in Paris, France, on 14 October 2015. The protest is organized just one week after a police officer was seriously wounded in a shoot-out with a gunman who was granted an out-of-jail permit. (Photo by Mustafa Sevgi/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 14: Protestors hold a banner as approximately 7500 French police officers demonstrate to call for better working conditions in front of the Justice ministry in Paris, France, on 14 October 2015. The protest is organized just one week after a police officer was seriously wounded in a shoot-out with a gunman who was granted an out-of-jail permit. (Photo by Mustafa Sevgi/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 14: French police officers wearing shirt showing police as targeting as approximately 7500 French police officers demonstrate to call for better working conditions in front of the Justice ministry in Paris, France, on 14 October 2015. The protest is organized just one week after a police officer was seriously wounded in a shoot-out with a gunman who was granted an out-of-jail permit. (Photo by Mustafa Sevgi/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 14: Approximately 7500 French police officers demonstrate to call for better working conditions in front of the Justice ministry in Paris, France, on 14 October 2015. The protest is organized just one week after a police officer was seriously wounded in a shoot-out with a gunman who was granted an out-of-jail permit. (Photo by Mustafa Sevgi/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
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PARIS (AP) — French police officers are protesting what they call increasingly unsafe working conditions, after an officer was critically wounded by a convict who had not returned from a prison furlough.

A few thousand officers gathered Wednesday on the Place Vendome in Paris, waving union flags and sending up orange smoke from flares. The crowd fell silent as an announcer addressed the justice minister in the name of their injured comrade.

SEE ALSO: Gun shop ordered to pay millions to injured police officers

The shooting hit a nerve among officers feeling strained after a particularly tense and high-security year in France, which started with deadly extremist attacks on the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a kosher market.

Similar protests are planned around France. The prime minister planned to address their concerns later Wednesday and President Francois Hollande promised to meet police unions next week.

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