Members of the ‘gilets jaunes’ – the anti-globalist yellow vest movement sweeping France – have announced that they will partake in a 5th round of demonstrations this weekend, although others have called for a truce after Tuesday night’s terror attack in Strasbourg.
Despite President Macron bowing to some of their demands during a live televised speech on Monday, the revolt is far from over, with more protests planned for Saturday.
8,000 police officers will be deployed in Paris, while 89,000 police and gendarmes will be deployed throughout the country.
The government has called on the yellow vests to pause their activities so police can concentrate on criminals and terrorists, with Minister of the Interior, Christophe Castaner commenting, “Frankly, I can tell you that I would rather see the police doing their real job, that is to say, prosecute criminals, reduce the risk of terrorism, rather than having to secure roundabouts where a few thousand people are mobilizing.”
However, Pierre-Gaël Laveder, spokesman of the yellow vests in Montceau-les-Mines (Saone-et-Loire), dismissed such talk as “government propaganda,” insisting, “act 5 will take place Saturday” and that “We know that several unions are starting to wake up, dockworkers, railway workers, tax agents, local industry … Saturday could be a great day.”
Chantal Perrotin, a yellow vests leader in the Rhônes-Alpes region, said the gilets jaunes were not indifferent to what happened in Strasbourg, but that more rallies should take place because Macron has yet to address demands for direct democracy and wage increases.
Another member, Benjamin Francois Cauchy, said a halt in the protests was necessary to maintain the support of the public, commenting, “The truce is indispensable to prevent the movement from losing the sympathy of public opinion.”
Another spokesperson, Jacline Mouraud, called for a truce, arguing, “There is progress, an open door.”
While it’s certain that there will be protests this weekend, their numbers look set to be a lot smaller than previous weekends.
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