The anger at Macron’s corona policy is growing. In France, more and more people are demonstrating against the measures. The government is now partially changing the rules.
Paris – Demonstrations against the government have been taking place in France for weeks. The reason is the tightened corona measures and the mandatory vaccination for parts of the population. Over the weekend, 230,000 demonstrators across the country protested at a total of 180 rallies. The resistance is now showing its first successes. The rules are at least partially adapted.
Corona in France: Macron’s strict rules are slightly relaxed – mandatory vaccination remains
At the end of July, the French parliament approved the tightening of the corona rules. The step was justified with the sustained increase in new infections every day. Within a week, around 225 people per 100,000 across the country had recently been infected with the corona virus. Germany’s neighbor is in the middle of the fourth wave. The rules have therefore been expanded to include the so-called health pass.
This means that strict 3G rules apply when entering shopping centers, restaurants, health facilities, cinemas, general major events or when traveling long-distance by public transport: vaccinated, recovered or tested. The presentation of the digital health passport is essential in almost all public places. The mandatory vaccination for health and care workers as well as for firefighters and paramedics is particularly polarizing. In some areas in the south, there are also stricter rules such as the requirement to wear a mask outdoors or earlier closing times for shops.
President Emmanuel Macron wants to hold on to the controversial vaccination requirement. It should come into force on September 15th. However, there should be slight easing. In the daily newspaper Le Parisien Health Minister Olivier Véran announced changes to the previous plans. For example, negative tests are now valid for 72 hours, instead of 48 hours. It is unclear whether the demonstrators are satisfied with these adjustments. Observers expect further protests in the next few weeks.
Corona protests in France: record number of participants, parallels to yellow vests
Macron’s corona policy has been criticized for weeks. According to representative surveys, a clear majority of the approximately 67 million inhabitants are supporting the measures, but at the same time the headwind is increasing. The Ministry of the Interior put the number of demo participants on the weekend around August 7th at around 237,000 – more than ever since the start of the new protests a month ago. It was the fourth consecutive weekend of mass rallies. The demonstrations were largely peaceful, but in Lyon police are said to have used tear gas against demonstrators.
In the middle of the holiday season, such large numbers of participants are unusual, said David Le Bars, general secretary of the police union SCPN on the radio station France Info. Autumn could be “a bit complicated”. The political scientist Jérôme Fourquet also looks forward to the next few months with concern. One can certainly draw parallels with the anti-corona movement to the yellow vests movement, which has been demonstrating for months against the social reforms of the Macron government, he said on the television channel LCI.
Corona in France: The south of the country is now considered a high-risk corona area
The situation in France is now also a concern of German politics. The federal government has classified the Occitania region with the capital Toulouse as well as Provence, the Côte d’Azur and their hinterland as corona high-risk areas since Sunday. The same applies to the Mediterranean island of Corsica. All of these areas are now usually popular destinations for German vacationers during vacation time.
For Germans who nevertheless decide to travel to the relevant areas, the adjustment also has consequences. Returnees who have not been vaccinated or have recovered now have to be in quarantine in Germany and can end this at the earliest after five days with a negative test. (as / dpa)