France is cracking down on “yellow vest” protesters following a weekend of renewed violence – as the Macron administration announced on Monday that it would ban demonstration in several areas of france – including the Champs Elysees in Paris, if “ultra elements” are present, according to Interior Minister Edouard Philippe.
‘We will ban demonstrations if ultra elements’ are present, said Philippe, according to CNEWS.
The ban will apply to “neighborhoods that have been most affected as soon as we have knowledge of” the “ultras.”
“I am thinking of course the Champs-Elysees in Paris, the place Pey-Berland in Bordeaux, the Capitol Square in Toulouse”, Philippe added, where “we will proceed to the immediate dispersal of all groups.“
Philippe added that he has asked the State Judicial Agent to “systematically seek the financial responsibility of troublemakers.”
J’ai demandé à l’Agent Judiciaire de l’État de rechercher systématiquement la responsabilité financière des fauteurs de trouble.
— Edouard Philippe (@EPhilippePM) March 18, 2019
Saturday marked a significant escalation in violence during the group’s 18th straight week of protests – which began as a revolt against a climate-change gas tax and expanded into a general anti-government movement.
Ready for a bit of the old ultraviolence?pic.twitter.com/pXmC81yoEQ
— Bellingdog (@Bellingdawg) March 16, 2019
THE SAINT SULPICE IN PARIS JUST IGNITED WHILE I WAS INSIDE pic.twitter.com/40PHCZ177w
— lil g (@lili_gasparr) March 17, 2019
As we noted on Sunday, the riots were so severe that French President Emmanuel Macron cut short a vacation at the La Mongie ski resort in the Hautes-Pyrénées following a three-day tour of East Africa which took him to Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya.
Macron said over Twitter that “strong decisions” were coming to prevent more violence.
Macron said some individuals — dubbed “black blocs” by French police forces — were taking advantage of the protests by the Yellow Vest grassroots movement to “damage the Republic, to break, to destroy.” Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on Twitter that those who excused or encouraged such violence were complicit in it.