Demonstrations against right-wing extremists in around thirty cities against the background of the demand for a dam

While waiting to find out if the Republican front will land in next Sunday’s election, he was on the streets this Saturday. Human Rights League, SOS Racisme, CGT, Syndicate of Justice…. A total of around thirty organizations and unions called for demonstrations against the possibility of giving Marine Le Pen access to the Elysée. The authorities expected around 15,000 people in the area, including almost 4,000 in Paris.

“We are here to say no to the far right. For the society, the freedoms, but also the climate. It would be a real step backwards if she came to power,” said Jean-François Julliard, Director General of Greenpeace France, Place de la Nation, before the procession left at around 2.30pm. “Against the extreme right, for justice and equality. No Le Pen at the Elysée”, advertises the head banner in Paris. Few politicians were in the procession except Philippe Martinez (CGT) Dominique Sopo (SOS racism) Arié Alimi (lawyer) Imane Ouelhalj (UNEF) and others.

Bitter call to the dam

A banner read “Better a voice that stinks than a voice that kills”. “Our concern is that the extreme right will come to power, we don’t want Marine Le Pen in the Élysée. We are here to say: “Use your vote to prevent him coming to power”, we are not saying “elect Macron”, but that is what matters,” stressed François Sauterey, co-president of Mrap.

For some, the call for a dam is urgent but bitter. SOS Racisme activist Sasha Halgand regrets being faced with “a duel between Macron and Le Pen that the youth don’t want. We want to say no to the extreme right. Macron participated in his rise, but the useful vote goes to him. If Marine le Pen came to power, there would be fascist militias and draconian laws.” In Besançon, Malee Caretti, 28, demonstrated “against racism. It’s been getting worse and worse for years, we see this trivialization of racism and social violence.

The lack of debate about ecology indicated this

Lucile Muller, 19, an animation cinema student in Paris, is there to “contest the two contestants”. “It’s not acceptable that we have to choose between Macron and Le Pen, we had the same result five years ago, but we didn’t know Macron. There we saw police violence, draconian laws. We would have liked to have had the choice, with a second round of Mélenchon / Macron, with debates on ecology, for example.”

In Paris, the demonstration is classified as “vulnerable” by the authorities, who deployed an important device, as the procession is “likely to bring together various protesters, yellow vests, ultra-leftists” and associations, according to a police source. A video calling for demonstrations in Paris against Emmanuel Macron has been circulating on social networks since Friday evening. And on the fringes of these demonstrations, the militant environmental group Extinction Rébellion settled on the Grands Boulevards, hoping to use the Easter weekend for a multi-day agora.

Marine Le Pen, speaking to the press in Saint-Rémy-sur-Avre (Eure-et-Loir) this morning, said it was “deeply anti-democratic to come and demonstrate against the results of an election”. So I think the French are uncomfortable to see their election being contested in the streets with demonstrations like that.”

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