Global security replaces the yellow vests: 133,000 demonstrators in France according to the Interior, 500,000 for the organizers

Many rallies were organized in France this Saturday against the “global security” law replaces the yellow vests when it debuted in 2018. 133,000 demonstrators marched in many cities, according to the government. Tensions erupted between demonstrators and the police in Paris, but also in Rennes, Lyon and Strasbourg.

The “global security” law did not support by the French, articles 21, 22 and 24 and demand the abandonment of the text, which they consider infringing on “freedom of expression” and “the State by right” .

The criticisms target in particular article 24 of the law, which penalizes the malicious dissemination of images of law enforcement agencies. Despite its adoption at first reading by the National Assembly, the controversy was such that Matignon resolved to announce a new rewrite of the text by an independent “commission”. Before backpedaling in the face of the anger of parliamentarians and the majority, to whom Jean Castex had to assure that they would have the last word.

The Ministry of the Interior counted 133,000 demonstrators, the organizers 500,000. They demanded the abandonment of the text, which they consider infringing “freedom of expression” and “the rule of law”. Opposition to the proposed law is exacerbated by a series of cases of police violence, including the beating of a black music producer by police in Paris a week ago.

François Hollande believes that the debate “was badly started” and that its “legislative translation was as inappropriate as it was inappropriate”. Recall that article 24 of this bill intends to penalize one year in prison and a fine of 45,000 euros for any dissemination of “the image of the face or any other element of identification” of members of the forces of the order in intervention, when it “undermines” their “physical or mental integrity”.

The former president also recalled having “also been confronted with this type of decision, in particular with the deprivation of nationality”. In fact, three days after the attacks of November 13, 2015, François Hollande wanted to modify the Constitution to include the state of emergency regime and the extension of the deprivation of nationality to all binationals convicted of terrorism, even those born in France.

“Today, if there is honor, it must be in the withdrawal of the text and not in its maintenance”, estimated the predecessor of Emmanuel Macron, in a video interview with the newspaper La Montagne broadcast on his Twitter account. “There is more honor to withdrawing a text when it strikes the conscience and divides society than to maintain it, for a government or a President of the Republic, when the risk is to create incomprehension and violence, ”he continued.

If the gatherings took place in general calm, some clashes broke out, especially in Paris, demonstrators having erected some barricades in front of the police and throwing projectiles on the sidelines of the demonstration.

In Lyon, the prefecture figures at 7,500, the number of demonstrators (13,000 according to the organizers). According to information from Progress, “three police officers were injured and four people [were] arrested” in the city of the Rhône. In Strasbourg, 1,500 demonstrators according to the prefecture and nearly 3,000 according to local media and AFP marched to cries of “everyone can film the police”. Gatherings have also taken place in medium-sized towns, such as Bourg-en-Bresse (Ain) or Montbéliard (Doubs). In the city of Doubs, they were 400 demonstrators according to France 3.

In total, 46 people were arrested in Paris and in the region. 23 members of the security forces were injured in the capital and 14 others in the region, the Interior Ministry said. Gérald Darmanin condemned on his Twitter account “unacceptable violence against the police”. On social networks, several videos circulated showing police officers violently taken to task, beaten while sometimes being on the ground.

A freelance journalist of Syrian origin was also wounded in the face during a police charge as were several demonstrators, noted an AFP journalist.

In Rennes, up to 4,000 people according to the prefecture, 5,000 according to the unions marched. Incidents between demonstrators and the police broke out at the end of the journey.

The prefecture reports “violent and determined people” who committed “damage to street furniture and video protection cameras, created barricades, unsealed cobblestones and threw projectiles” at the police and gendarmes who “had to use force, on several occasions, always with discernment and in a proportionate manner, to disperse these radical elements “which were” repulsed by the fire of tear gas canisters and the intervention of a water launcher ” .

The StopLoiS SécuritéGlobale coordination, which notably brings together journalists’ unions and human rights associations, reports 500,000 demonstrators across France, including 200,000 in Paris.

The coordination also “firmly” denounced the “some degradation and violence in Paris and Lyon, in particular” violence against the police on the Place de la Bastille “after the end of the demonstration.” We can only accept a handful. people are forcibly imposing their strategy of protest on hundreds of thousands of other peaceful demonstrators, “the statement said. The coordination also said that” this movement is only in its infancy.

The Interior Ministry said on November 29 that 62 wounded had been identified the day before among the police (39 in the provinces and 23 in Paris), police and gendarmes combined.

Sixty police and gendarmes were injured and 81 people were arrested Saturday in France, during demonstrations against a security text and police violence, according to a report from the Interior Ministry.

62 wounded were recorded among the police (39 in the provinces and 23 in Paris), the ministry said on Sunday. Several videos posted on social networks showed police being beaten up by protesters.

Two demonstrators – who made a report to the General Inspectorate of Police – were injured in the Province, according to the police. In Paris, the balance sheet of the injured on the side of the demonstrators has not yet been carried out.

A freelance Syrian photographer, Ameer al Halbi, 24, who was covering the protest was injured in the face. RSF Secretary General Christophe Deloire denounced on Twitter on Saturday evening the “unacceptable” police violence against the Polka Magazine and AFP employee.

Frédéric Veaux, current director general of the National Police denounces, in the columns of the Journal Du Dimanche, the attitude of three police officers who beat up a music producer last week.

Opponents of the text responded on Saturday. In total, according to figures from the Ministry of the Interior, 133,000 people demonstrated in the streets of France to protest against the “global security” law and its controversial article 24 aimed at sanctioning the “malicious” dissemination of police images. . While the left demands the withdrawal of the text, and the government must also face the controversy surrounding the beating of producer Michel Zecler by police officers, the executive is trying to get out of this bad patch.

“A text overtaken by the context”. This is why this walker predicts “certain death” in article 24. But the Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin does not intend to back down, because to renounce would make him lose the support of the right, which would accuse the executive to let go of the police, while on Saturday, the police were assaulted by some demonstrators who came to “break the cop”.

The executive must therefore find a way out to “reconcile police protection and freedom to inform”, says Matignon, even if a close friend of Emmanuel Macron sees the demonstration as a bad trial. “A month ago, he was attacked from everywhere because he repeated that in France, he would always defend the freedom of the press,” said the latter.

This does not prevent Macronie from phosphorizing to bring down the pressure. Some therefore suggest taking inspiration from the text against separatism, which includes a similar provision, amending the penal code and not the 1881 law on freedom of the press. One thing is certain: the government wants to find a calming solution, without waiting for the text to arrive in the Senate in early 2021. Even if it is only there that it can officially be rewritten.

Frédéric Veaux, the director general of the National Police condemns in the Journal Du Dimanche the aggression of Michel Zecler, a music producer, in Paris on November 21. A filmed beating, the images of which were broadcast last Thursday.

“These are the behaviors of delinquents: forcibly entering people, engaging in such acts of violence … It is above all a question of ethics, of value, of deontology” explains Frédéric Veaux. “I was scandalized, like all the police in this country (…) You can trust the National Police that these events will be treated with the most extreme severity once the responsibilities have been established” continues the leader.

In this interview, Frédéric Veaux also indicates that in 2020, 39 police officers were excluded from the National Police against 34 in 2019. “These figures twist the neck to the rumor of a lax police towards his people” estimates the former prefect of Mayenne. According to him, the legitimate emotion aroused by the Michel Zecler affair will certainly lead to “amalgamations and provocations” in the territories “where the presence of the police is not desired”.

In 2016, Frédéric Veaux was appointed prefect of Mayenne. Position he held until December 2018. He was then appointed in the Landes. A man of rigor and righteousness, the one who joined the police in 1982, was appointed in January 2020 to head the general direction of the National Police.

In the crowd, we can see a sign, that of Antonia, won over by doubt. “It is written: ‘stop assaulting us’. That is to say that me now, when I go to a demonstration, I am afraid of the police, it is all the same the height, it does not go .

It is an institution which is ill, in relation to their training, or to the psychological follow-up of these people because there are a lot of police officers in distress too. “

Sanctions against offending officials should be tightened. This overhaul of the police, Antonia does not believe, disgusted by the attitude of the government. “What is the reaction of the executive? The reaction is the global security law, to maintain a confrontation between the police and the population. It looks like we are passing laws that will make the problems worse! The executive, for me, it blows on the embers “.

Embers that could be extinguished thanks to a decision, assure these demonstrators: the resignation of the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin and the prefects where the incidents took place.

About the author