Violent protests broke out last weekend in French cities including Paris, Lyon, and Marseille over President Emmanuel Macron’s draft security law that has been blasted by critics as a major crackdown in the country on civil liberties.
The protest targeted a bill Macron’s government proposed last month that would ban publishing images of police officers, claiming it would put their lives in danger. The proposal was seen as vague and protesters took to the streets. The penalty could come with a 45,000-euro fine and up to one year in jail.
However, the streets erupted en masse following the release of a video on social media of police severely beating Michel Zecler, a black music producer, for not wearing a face mask.
Reuters reported that “Black Bloc anarchists” in the country fired projectiles at police officers and damaged property during the unrest. The news agency reported the violence marks the second weekend of unrest in the country’s capital. The report said 30 rioters were arrested.
Thousands of protesters descended on Porte des Lilas on Saturday, and 22 were arrested after clashes with police. Gerard Darmanin, the French interior minister, thanked police for confronting “very violent individuals.” reported that cars were torched, buildings damaged, and firecrackers were fired at police. Police responded by firing tear gas.
The report said some demonstrators chanted, “Everyone hates the police.”
TRENDPOST: As with most politicians, France’s Emmanuel Macron will trample fundamental human rights to make political gains.
Macron is set to face a tough challenge from Marine Le Pen, labeled by the media as a “far right” opposition leader. Thus, it assumed that using his crackdown on mosques and Article 24 will make inroads into Le Pen’s support base.
Alexis Poulin, a political commentator, told Al Jazeera that Macron is “just preparing for the major success of Marine Le Pen. [Far-right voters] clearly want to stick to the original and in Macron, they only see a fake president trying to act like he’s understanding.”

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