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The French farmers’ rage is not over. Large demonstrations in Bordeaux block the city



A farmers’ rally outside the Hôtel de la Région Nouvelle-Aquitaine, called by the Coordination Rurale, led to incidents with the forces of law and order on Monday morning in Bordeaux, France. The farmer’s rage is not yet over. 

Around 300 coordination rural farmers, half of whom were members of CR 47, dumped manure and tires in front of the building, where a large police force had been deployed behind security barriers. The situation degenerated when farm machinery broke down the barriers to force their way through.

The police then used tear gas to force the farmers back, and brief clashes ensued before calm was restored. “We had a big welcoming committee,” explains José Pérez, co-president of the Coordination rurale du Lot-et-Garonne. We were gassed in all directions by the police. It’s the first time since the start of our movement that we’ve had a confrontation with the police.”

They then moved on to the quays of the Garonne, where a fire of tires and pallets was lit and slurry was dumped on the water mirror. “We want regional emergency aid,” demanded the CR, among other demands concerning standards and the installation of farmers, according to a press release.

“It’s a real dialogue with the deaf.”

In a response sent to the press, the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region recalled that it “has put in place measures to anticipate and support crises: anti-freeze equipment, avian flu vaccine tests, vineyard grubbing-up diversification, bank loan guarantees, etc.”

A delegation from the union was then given the opportunity to address regional elected representatives prior to the plenary session of the assembly chaired by the socialist Alain Rousset, as requested by the CR. “It’s a real dialogue of the deaf,” lamented José Pérez, co-president of the Coordination Rurale du Lot-et-Garonne.

“We’re demonstrating because of the pro-environmentalist policies of Mr. Rousset, the President of the Region,” added José Perez. With regard to the creation of lakes, he’s imposing too many agro-ecological regulations, and we’re fed up. As for his installation policy, young farmers’ files are dragging on and taking much longer than before. It’s becoming unbearable. Mr. Rousset doesn’t listen to us at all. He doesn’t give a damn about us. Farmers’ struggle against environmentalists is becoming the leading motif of protests

The region, for its part, deplores the fact that the union’s representatives “forget about the best measures implemented by the region and, above all, suggest unrealistic demands.”.


“Unacceptable degradation”, but anger is huge

The Centre & Independents group, to which Agen mayor Jean Dionis belongs, condemned these acts of vandalism “in the strongest possible terms.”. “This Monday, a major farmers’ demonstration (called by the Coordination Rurale) disrupted the opening of the plenary session of the Conseil Régional de Nouvelle-Aquitaine, the centrists say in a press release.

On this occasion, unacceptable damage was committed against the Hôtel de Région. President Alain Rousset approved the Center & Independents group’s motion to call an extraordinary plenary session centered on the future of agriculture during this session.”

Nothing has been vandalized,” says the co-president of CR 47. This is just another provocation by Mr. Rousset against us. We just emptied our skips and dumped slurry, as we did during our previous actions.”

However, France is shot through with deep anger, and it seems unlikely that a pacification can be achieved anytime soon.

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