Mid shot anti-racism protesters in Place de la République raise their fists

Thousands protest police brutality and discrimination in Paris

Angry shouts rose from the peaceful, largely black crowd as a small group of white extreme-right activists climbed a building overlooking the protest and unfurled a huge banner denouncing "anti-white racism."

Police did not arrest them, and prevented angry protesters from approaching the far-right group.

Residents in the building tore part of the banner down, one of them raising his fist in victory.

Police surrounded the intended march route, bracing for potential violence after scattered clashes at some demonstrations around France recently, also inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement and George Floyd's death in the US.

The Paris protest was among several in France and other countries this weekend for the same cause.

Saturday's march was led by supporters of Adama Traoré, a French black man who died in police custody in 2016 in circumstances that remain unclear despite four years of back-and-forth autopsies. No one has been charged in the case.

Protests were also being held in Marseille, Lyon and other French cities.

The French government is under growing pressure to address long-running accusations of excessive violence by police, particularly against minorities.