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UPDATED: 13:10, September 04, 2005
Thousands march in Paris to demand better housing
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Thousands of people marched in ParisSaturday to demand better housing for the poor after deadly fires killed dozens of people living in old buildings in the French capital.

The marchers also condemned the government's plans to evacuate people living in the squatters' havens after a deadly fire on Monday killed seven Africans, including four children.

Organizers said 10,000 people were participating in the march, but police put the figure at 52,000.

On Friday, Paris police evacuated some 150 African immigrants from two unsafe buildings declared to be "irremediably uninhabitable," over the protests of mothers and the sobs of children.

The evacuations, ordered by Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, came after recent fires in Paris killed 48 people, mostly African immigrants, and put the issue of sub-par housing on the national agenda.

Source: Xinhua

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