Thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters marched in French cities on Saturday to condemn violence in Gaza, defying a ban imposed after demonstrators marched on two synagogues in Paris last weekend and clashed with riot police.

French President Francois Hollande said he understood emotional responses to the killing of hundreds of Palestininan civilians in the Gaza Strip in a flare-up of hostilities with Israel but would not allow violence to spill over into France.

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