IN PICTURES: Hundreds of tractors roll in to Paris to protest ‘agri bashing’

Hundreds of tractors have arrived in Paris as part of a coordinated nationwide action by angry French farmers.

IN PICTURES: Hundreds of tractors roll in to Paris to protest 'agri bashing'
All photos: AFP

The tractors have converged on Paris as farmers from around the country call on French president Emmanuel Macron to sauve ton paysan (save your farmers).

The farmers are angry at government policies which they feel discriminate against them, including a new EU-Canada trade deal and plans to restrict the use of pesticides in the French countryside.


The two main farmers' unions say they are fed up with 'agri bashing' or discrimination against farmers.

The protest began at around 6am when nearly 1,000 tractors converged on the areas outside Paris, before moving in towards the Paris ringroad where they staged rolling roadblocks.

As well as the Paris périphérique, it is expected that the A1, A4, A5, A6, A10, A11, A13, A14 and A15 motorways will be affected, as well as the N1, N2, N12 and N20 highways and disruption is likely to continue for most of the day.

READ ALSO Why are French farmers lighting bonfires across the country?


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French village inherits fortune from Austrian who fled Nazis

An Austrian man who fled the Nazis with his family during World War II has bequeathed a large part of his fortune to the French village whose residents hid them from persecution for years.

French village inherits fortune from Austrian who fled Nazis
The village of Chambon-sur-Lignon in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France. Photo: AFP

Eric Schwam, who died aged 90 on December 25th, wrote the surprise gift into his will for Chambon-sur-Lignon, located on a remote mountain plateau in the Auvergne area of southeast France that historically has a large Protestant community known for offering shelter to those in need.

“It's a large amount for the village,” Mayor Jean-Michel Eyraud told AFP.

He declined to specify the amount since the will was still being sorted out, but his predecessor, who told a local website that she met with Schwam and his wife twice to discuss the gift, said it was around two million euros.

Schwam and his family arrived in 1943 and were hidden in a school for the duration of the war, and remained until 1950.

He later studied pharmacy and married a Catholic woman from the region near Lyon, where they lived.

Eyraud said Schwam asked that the money be used for educational and youth initiatives, in particular scholarships.

Around 2,500 Jews were taken in and protected during World War II by Chambon-sur-Lignon, whose residents were honoured as “Righteous Among the Nations” by Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial centre.

Over the centuries the village has taken in a wide range of people fleeing religious or political persecution, from priests driven into hiding during the French Revolution to Spanish republicans during the civil war of the 1930s, and more recently migrants and refugees from the Middle East and Africa.