Between 782,000 and 3.2 million people marched in the streets against the pension reform. In Nantes, Rennes, Paris or Toulouse, violence broke out.
Many demonstrators wandered the streets on Monday, May 1st with, in the background, the fight against pension reform. The violence still punctuated the processions.
The violence has mounted over the demonstrations against the pension reform, Monday, May 1st. At first calm, the processions experienced renewed tensions as the stages to adopt and then promulgate the law.
Inevitably, this May 1st was feared by the information providing for a “historic mobilization and “an unprecedented day in terms of unity, protest against the government and vengeful spirit”. Atmosphere.
It is clear that if the processions went well in most gatherings in France, in large cities such as Nantes, Lyon, Paris and Rennes, the demonstrations were still marked by violence.
Back in pictures on this day which saw mobilizing from 782,000 to 2.3 million people.
In Paris, tensions from the start of the procession
The demonstrators rushed between Republic and Nation. They were between 112,000 according to the Prefecture and 550,000 according to the CGT to wander.
The trade union procession could complete the route without too much difficulty. On the other hand, the departure was hardly given, and the violence began. CRS charges followed one another, a policeman was hit by a Molotov cocktail. He would be badly burned. This time, journalist Rémy Buisine was also hit by a disencirclement grenade.
Shops were damaged and self-service bike terminals burned. The security forces responded to projectiles from protesters with tear gas.
The dispersal of the demonstrators, place de la Nation, lasted long hours and was marked by numerous clashes. There are 111 arrests and at least 25 injured on the police side, according to Gérald Darmanin. A police officer was seriously burned, in the second degree.
In Lyon, the demonstration degenerates
Proof of the violence of the clashes in the capital of the Gauls, the prefecture counted 19 wounded in its ranks, against six on the side of the demonstrators.
Many stores were vandalized, some were even looted. The “tear gas” shots followed one another, and the police made no less than 46 arrests. Journalists also note the very many fires in Lyon, unheard of according to our editorial staff.
The mobilization was however substantial with 17,000 demonstrators according to the police and 45,000 according to the CGT.
Nantes and Rennes: more violence
In Brittany, in Rennes, there were no less than three demonstrations for this May 1st. If overall, the processions were less marked by violence than the previous gatherings, garbage fires and some clashes nevertheless animated the mobilization.
An undeclared demonstration was still going on in the evening. 17 people were arrested, 6 of whom were taken into custody. The prefecture estimates that 7,850 demonstrators took to the streets; the inter-union, 24,000.
In Nantes, on the other hand, the demonstration took place once again under high tension. The parking lot of the Departmental Council was targeted by an attempted fire, as was the Prefecture.
Many cars were set on fire and the clashes were very violent with a demonstrator seriously injured in the hand. The inter-union claims 80,000 demonstrators in the streets when the prefecture announces 17,500. 29 people were arrested. The police deplore in their ranks 24 wounded.
Same observation in Toulouse where seven people were injured in this demonstration, including four among the police. Sixteen people were arrested. According to the prefecture, 13,500 people demonstrated, seven times more than according to the unions.
In the pink city, shops and banks have been degraded. Similar to Montpellier.
In “medium” cities, historic demonstrations
Gérald Darmanin, during a post-demonstration speech, however, recalled that “in the vast majority of cases”, the processions took place in “calm”.
A little everywhere in France, the processions were provided. 2,000 people demonstrated in Dieppe on Monday, May 1st. “Unheard of at least for 20 years,” said a union official.
In Le Mans , 8,000 people wandered around compared to 500 in 2022. Proof of the protest against the pension reform.
In Guingamp , 3,000 people marched through the streets. Ten times more than during the usual May 1st.
Even in Sablé-sur-Sarthe , where a demonstration on May 1 is not usual, the unions mobilized on Monday. 120 people marched through the streets.
A heavy toll
Of nearly 300 rallies planned across the country, most took place in a calm and rather good-natured atmosphere. Except that on the national level, the balance sheet is heavy.
291 arrests were made and 108 police officers and gendarmes were injured at the end of this day, reported Gérald Darmanin. A provisional figure at the time of writing these lines.
Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne denounced on Twitter the “scenes of violence on the sidelines of the processions” which she deemed “unacceptable”.