NATO heads of state are meeting on the outskirts of French city of Strasbourg to mark the organizations’ 60th anniversary amid protests.
Anti-NATO demonstrations continue in Strasbourg and the neighboring German cities of Baden-Baden and Kehl despite the deployment of thousands of German and French troops and police forces.
Police clashed with protestors, who have vowed to disrupt the meeting, before dawn on Saturday.
Tensions increased as groups of protesters dressed in black made their way into the city center.
Police, which have arrested hundreds of people over the last three days, fired tear gas towards at least one group of protesters.
One protester was wounded and taken away by an ambulance after police tried to force back anti-NATO demonstrators, campaigning to have NATO disbanded following the end of the Cold War.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
A dispute between Turkey and Europe over the appointment of a new leader threatened to shatter any semblance of unity after the leaders failed to reach a deal on Friday.
Turkey blocked Europe’s candidate, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who had emerged as front-runner to replace Dutchman Jaap de Hoop Scheffer as secretary-general when he steps down at the end on July.
Turkey has criticized Rasmussen’s handling of a row in 2006 over cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that offended Muslims.
NATO officials put a brave face on the deadlock and said talks would continue on Saturday, the second and last day of the summit that is co-hosted by France and Germany in Strasbourg and nearby Baden-Baden.
Police said they had arrested 25 demonstrators during the night and estimated 1,800 had left a makeshift protest camp on Strasbourg’s outskirts in groups, watched by police helicopters.