Leader of France’s ‘yellow vests’ arrested

3rd January, 2019 09:34:04 printer

PARIS: One of the leaders of the “yellow vest” anti-government demonstrations was detained by police in Paris late Wednesday for organising an unauthorised protest, signalling a harder line by the authorities against the movement, reports AFP.

Eric Drouet—who already faces a trial for carrying a weapon at a previous protest—was held while heading for the Champs-Elysees, which has been the scene of violent clashes over the last month.

“It’s called respecting the rule of law,” Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Tuesday as he defended the arrest which drew criticism from some leftist opponents of the government.

“It’s normal that when you break the laws of the republic, you face the consequences,” he added.

A few dozen demonstrators had gathered outside a McDonald’s restaurant near France’s famous Arc de Triomphe war monument and had been waiting for Drouet to arrive early Wednesday evening.