Yellow Vests DEFY Covid-19 and police LOCKDOWN to protest Macron government (WATCH LIVE)

14-03-20 02:12:00,

Yellow Vest demonstrators aren’t letting a ban on mass gatherings or fears of coronavirus stop them from expressing their opposition to the French government, and are staging their weekly protests in Paris.

France’s Interior Minister Christophe Castaner on Friday banned all gatherings of more than 100 people but hundreds of demonstrators are continuing the weekly Yellow Vest vigil and are protesting at Paris landmarks.

Thousands of French security forces personnel hit the streets of the capital in a bid to clamp down on the movement, which has now been running for 70 consecutive weeks.

Eyewitness footage shows riot police firing tear gas in a bid to subdue the activists as the protests spiralled towards violence.

In a televized address to the nation on Thursday, President Emmanuel Macron announced school closures and urged people to avoid close contact for fear of spreading the virus, which has killed 79 people in France and infected more than 3,600.

Before that announcement Paris police had already rejected requests from protesters to demonstrate at prominent sites in the French capital.

The demonstration comes just a day before voters are set to go to the polls in local elections, in which Macron’s party is forecast to fare poorly.

The French president decided to press ahead with the elections despite schools and universities being shut and public transport curtailed due to contagion fears. 

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Palestinian flag, Yellow Vests, Anonymous masks: Wide range of protester groups join demonstration in support of Assange (PHOTOS)

24-02-20 06:43:00,

Supporters of Julian Assange have staged quite a show outside Woolwich Court in London, throwing their artistic weight behind the embattled WikiLeaks co-founder.

Overlooked by a few policemen, dozens of protesters began amassing near the courthouse earlier on Monday, just as the judges began the closely-watched extradition hearing for Assange.

There was no shortage of conventional placards calling for Assange’s release, but some activists showed unorthodox creativity. One protester, dressed as a biblical character, stole the show by carrying a yellowish cross, with the words “The truth will win” imprinted on it.

Showing the victory sign, he posed for pictures, with a Palestinian flag unexpectedly waving in the distance.

Gilets jaunes, or the Yellow Vests, also arrived in post-Brexit Britain in order to support Assange’s cause. Their identical fatigues – and the French flags – were clearly visible in the crowd.

Members of Anonymous also made an appearance at the demonstration, stealing some of the limelight. They unfurled British and American flags, chained themvelves up to the banners, sending a message easy to decipher.

Monday’s action has drawn the attention of celebrities, including fashion designer and longtime friend of Assange, Vivienne Westwood, who passionately supported the publisher since he was brought to the high-security Belmarsh Prison.

After a week of opening arguments, the extradition hearing will be adjourned until May 18, when the two sides – Assange’s defense and lawyers for the US authorities – will present their evidence.
If extradited to the US, Assange will face a host of espionage charges carrying a maximum jail sentence of 175 years in total.

Also on
‘Oppression, arbitrary detention & torture will happen to journalists if extradition is successful’ – Assange’s father

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‘Yellow Vests’ march for Julian Assange outside Belmarsh Prison (VIDEOS)

27-01-20 03:25:00,

A group of protesters, clad in the yellow vests popularized by French demonstrators, have gathered at Belmarsh Prison to protest the detention of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Assange has been held at the prison since April.

Wrapped up against the murky British January weather, demonstrators assembled outside Belmarsh on Saturday, calling on UK authorities not to extradite Assange to the US, where he faces nearly two centuries in prison.

One day earlier, Assange’s defense campaign revealed that the imprisoned publisher had been moved from solitary confinement into the general population at Belmarsh, following a series of petitions from supporters. Assange had languished in solitary since his arrest last April, ostensibly on charges of skipping bail in 2012. UN rapporteur Nils Melzer accused the British government last month of perpetuating Assange’s “exposure to psychological torture” by keeping him isolated, and warned that his health may soon reach a “critical” stage.

On top of the one-year jail term for skipping bail, Assange also faces extradition to the United States, where he has been charged with espionage for publishing leaked documents detailing potential American war crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq. If found guilty, he faces 175 years behind bars.

On Thursday, Westminster Magistrates’ Court postponed the bulk of Assange’s extradition hearing until May, with the remainder to take place in late February.

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One Year of the Yellow Vests in France – Global Research

20-11-19 02:01:00,

Converge With Planned Labour Strikes

This past weekend the Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) celebrated their first birthday, with convivial barbeques on traffic circles (roundabouts) all over France followed by direct actions like liberating tollbooths. Although number of protestors has declined to about 10 per cent of the estimated 400,000 who rose up a year ago on November 17, 2018 – thanks to a year of violent police repression, media distortion, and sheer fatigue – a surprisingly large number of women and men throughout la France profonde (“middle France”) came out of ‘retirement’ and donned their yellow vests for “ACT 53” of the weekly Yellow Vest drama – double the previous weeks’ numbers. Recent polls indicate that 10 per cent of French people consider themselves “Yellow Vests,” and two-thirds still support them (although a majority wish they would go home!).

The first anniversary of the Yellow Vest uprising marks an historic moment: perhaps the first time in history that a self-organized, unstructured, leaderless, social movement has survived for so long. This weekend there was much eager discussion out on the traffic circles of the upcoming unlimited general strike called by the Confédération Générale du Travail (CGT) and other unions for December 5. Two weeks ago the Yellow Vests’ nationwide “Assembly of Assemblies” called for “convergence” with the upcoming strike, and the leader of the CGT, who had previously snubbed the Yellow Vests, reacted by inviting them to join.

So, after a year of lonely, increasingly dangerous, physical resistance to the neoliberal counter-reforms of the arrogant, unpopular “President of the rich,” suddenly new perspectives are opening for the Yellow Vests in their unequal struggle with the powerful, unified, increasingly authoritarian, capitalist state. (We will turn to this enticing possibility in a moment.)

This Revolution will not be Televised

None of the above events transpired through the French mainstream media, which as usual concentrated on two subjects: violence and Paris. In the capital this Saturday, as happens every Saturday, brigades of robo-cops outnumbered demonstrators and prevented them from actually marching along routes that had been (for once!) previously agreed upon, while a few bands of black-clad casseurs (vandals who somehow never seem to get arrested or even shot at) managed to smash bank windows and set a couple of cars on fire.

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ICYMI: Yellow Vests’ anniversary marked with barricades, militarized police & furious protesters

17-11-19 04:43:00,

Exactly a year since the Yellow Vest protests first broke out in France and spread across the nation to become a regular weekend tradition, the anniversary was marked by clashes and tear gas.

The boutiques and brasseries of central Paris remained largely untouched, although there was a clear nervousness that protesters would make it to the center of the city, and streets were barricaded and traffic blocked off from any likely targets.

The main area of confrontation on Saturday was in Place d’Italie with angry protesters, now largely without their signature gilets jaunes, facing off against heavily armored police who have developed their tactics over the last 12 months to try and contain the confrontation.

ICYMI’s Polly Boiko traveled to Paris to chart the rise of the gilets jaunes, and see exactly how their anniversary would be marked.

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