According to a count of the Ministry of the Interior regularly contested by the demonstrators, they were 3,600 yellow vests in France, including a thousand in Paris in stormy weather.
Still with an “anger”, and “determination” too: although there were many in the trade union procession of May 1st, the yellow vests were only a few thousand in the streets this Saturday for their 25th act, which promises to be their weakest mobilisation since the beginning of the movement in November.
A mobilization down for several weeks, where the demonstrations had often been enamelled with violence and dispersed in a deluge of tear. Last weekend, during Act 24, 23,600 demonstrators were identified by the authorities at the end of the day.
Candidates for Europeans
For their first act, on November 17, the “yellow vests”, which challenged the fiscal policy of the government of Emmanuel Macron , had gathered 282 000 people in France.
In Bordeaux , one of the strongholds of the mobilization, José, 61-year-old school life assistant, admits that “it’s running out of steam a bit”.
“There is a weariness. It’s been 25 weeks since we momentarily stopped living to find at least a kind of dignity”
Beyond the Saturday rallies, the social movement enters politics: out of the thirty-three lists validated Friday for the European elections, three claim the movement of “yellow vests”.
Without arousing enthusiasm in the streets of Paris, where the AFP has mostly met with demonstrators hostile to any commitment partisan.
“It’s opportunistic” for Louise, a 35-year-old school teacher, who fears “political recovery”. Marc, 59, wants above all “to block Macron,” still seem indecisive on his vote.
Three authorized events in Paris
In Paris – where three demonstrations were authorized -, the main procession started at 13h from Lariboisière hospital (Xe) towards Place de la Nation (XI).
On their way, the protesters passed near several hospitals in the east of the capital (Saint-Louis, Tenon, Saint-Antoine).
“For the public hospital we want money,” resumed the yellow vests passing the Tenon Hospital. At the windows, caregivers greeted them, others went out to explain their claims: because “the rest of the time we are invisible,” said Nicolas, a caregiver in front of a banner asking for more staff and resources.
In the late morning, about twenty “yellow vests” had distributed flyers at Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport to protest the privatization of ADP. “We are here to demand the cancellation of this sale,” said Guillaume, a 29-year-old Parisian.
“Take back” the roundabouts
These gatherings take place three days after the clashes between demonstrators and police on May 1, marked by the irruption of dozens of them in the hospital Pitié-Salpêtrière, after a panic.
Interior Minister Christophe Castaner , under fire from critics after speaking of “attack,” admitted Friday that he should not have used that word.
The Paris police headquarters has renewed its prohibition to protest on the Champs-Elysées, and in a perimeter including the National Assembly, the Elysée Palace and the area of the Notre-Dame cathedral, touched half April by a fire.
In La Roche-sur-Yon , 500 people marched, responding to a call for inter-regional demonstrations. Some clashes erupted in the afternoon and a protester, injured on the nose, was evacuated by firefighters.
In Montpellier , there were nearly a thousand to demonstrate, according to the prefecture, holding placards “Castaner liar” or “My friend is forbidden to demonstrate, I do not seriously replace it.” Similar slogans in Marseille, where several hundred people marched through the streets.
In Toulouse , a small roundabout in the city center was decorated with yellow balloons, “to remind people that it is important to return to the roundabouts, where it all began,” said Annie, a retiree.
In several cities, such as Chateau-Thierry (Aisne) or Castelnau-de-Médoc (Gironde) , the roundabouts were reinvested by handfuls of protesters.
In Lyon , the demonstration of “yellow vests” joined the procession (declared) responding to the call of the movement “Youth for Climate”. In Montluçon (Allier), 400 people participated in a rally against police violence, called “street medics”.
“Anti-Macron barbecues” must be held on several roundabouts, everywhere in France, at the initiative of France’s Deputy Insoumise François Ruffin , who will screen his film “J’veux du soleil” on “yellow vests” “.
In a platform called “yellow vests: We are not fooled! “, Published on the site of Liberation , actresses like Juliette Binoche or Emmanuelle Béart, writers like Édouard Louis or Annie Ernaux as well as 1,400 other actors of the world of the culture brought Saturday their support to the movement.