- Title: Protesters raise stolen portraits of Macron upside-down at anti-G7 demo
- Date: 25th August 2019
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (French) SPOKESWOMAN FOR NGO "ACTION NON-VIOLENTE COP 21," CECILE MARCHAND, SAYING: "Today, we decided to show 14 portraits of (French President) Emmanuel Macron, portraits that have been requisitioned from city halls these past few months by the activists of the 'Action Non-violente COP 21' to denounce the gap and the enormous disconnect between his smooth words on the international level, which is exactly what he is doing at the G7 (summit), and his policies on a concrete level in France, which are far from being ambitious to respond to the climate emergency." VARIOUS OF MARCHAND AND OTHER ACTIVISTS GATHERED DURING DEMONSTRATION, WITH UPSIDE-DOWN PORTRAITS OF MACRON (SOUNDBITE) (French) SPOKESWOMAN FOR NGO "ACTION NON-VIOLENTE COP 21," CECILE MARCHAND, SAYING: "To denounce these two-faced promises, we decided to take down portraits of Macron. I myself am having a court trial in September in Paris. I'm facing five years imprisonment and a 75,000 euro fine for taking down this portrait in a non-violent manner." VARIOUS OF ACTIVISTS SPEAKING DURING DEMONSTRATION, WITH UPSIDE-DOWN PORTRAITS VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS MARCHING WITH MACRON PORTRAITS WRAPPED IN PAPER VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS GATHERED, CHANTING (SOUNDBITE) (French) 43-YEAR-OLD TEACHER FROM TARBES, HELENE PANIEN, SAYING "I personally have not taken any down (portraits of Macron), but I fully support this action because it's very symbolic to remove the portraits from city halls of a person who is supposed to act for his people, for the emergencies that exist while he's seated in power. Since he's not doing so, we simply just take down his portraits. I think it's very legitimate, it's logical that he shouldn't have his portraits in city halls as he's not doing anything for the good of the people and of the planet." VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS CHANTING VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS MARCHING (SOUNDBITE) (French) 17-YEAR-OLD STUDENT PROTESTER, SAMUEL, SAYING: "We think Emmanuel Macron is not doing enough, he is not doing his best regarding climate issues, and we're denouncing the fact that he's actually doing strictly nothing and that he's continuing to not respect the COP 21 accords. And even when we respect the COP 21 accords, it's an average increase of 3 degrees (Celsius), which completely unacceptable for us to live with." VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS MARCHING
- Embargoed: 8th September 2019 12:23
- Keywords: G7 counter-summit G7 protests Emmanuel Macron march Bayonne upside-down portraits
- Location: BAYONNE, FRANCE
- City: BAYONNE, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: G7,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA003ATPTZYF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Protesters marched through the streets of Bayonne on Sunday (August 25) carrying official portraits of French President Emmanuel Macron, which were stolen from town halls around France.
The protest is the finale of months of civil disobedience which saw protesters steal the portraits with the aim of carrying them upside-down at the G7 summit, in defiance rather than respect of Macron's politics and the image he is trying to present to world leaders at the summit in neighbouring Biarritz.
Several hundred protesters marched carrying paper packages of portraits, some the stolen ones of Macron, others carrying slogans such as 'Where is Macron when it comes to climate change and social justice'.
One of the organisers will face trial in September for stealing one of the portraits and could face five years in prison and a 75,000 euro fine, Cecile Marchand told Reuters TV. Two more face trials in Lyon and Orleans.
The movement, which was formed under the slogan 'Take Down Macron' (Dechirons Macron), has stolen 125 portraits to match the 125 days it took France to overtake its carbon footprint this year they said. The stolen portraits were handed on and hidden before making their appearance on the streets at the summit as Macron met with leaders for a summit that will likely expose deep rifts over a clutch of issues such as global trade, climate change and taxing big tech.
Macron set an agenda for the group - France, Britain, Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States - that included the defense of democracy, gender equality, education and the environment. He invited Asian, African and Latin American leaders to join them for a global push on these issues.
(Production: Erol Dogrudogan, Ardee Napolitano, Claire Watson)
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