Calls for nationwide day of demonstrations in France against ‘far-right ideology’

Unions and political parties in France have united in a call for a day of demos "for freedom and against far-right ideology" on Saturday.

Calls for nationwide day of demonstrations in France against 'far-right ideology'
Illustration photo: François Monier/AFP

Some 60 organisations – from the CGT and FSU unions and left-wing political party La France Insoumise to rights organisations including SOS Racisme, Ligue des droits de l’Homme and Oxfam – have called for demonstrations to take place in towns and cities across France on Saturday, June 12th.

Their joint statement read: “For several months we have been witness to an alarming political and social climate. Allying with the extreme right or adopting its ideas is no longer forbidden. 

“Racist and sexist comments and acts at work and in life are spreading.

“Attacks on social rights and freedoms are increasing. In this political, economic, social and health context, injustices are exploding and causing great social misery.

“Several liberticidal laws are organising an authoritarian society of surveillance and control which will make the already excessive police violence invisible. Moreover, if some of these laws stigmatise a part of the population because of their religion, others target them because of their militant activity.

“In the face of this climate of hatred, racism and attacks on individual and collective freedoms, we have decided collectively to organise a first major national day of demonstrations and mobilisations on Saturday, June 12th.”

“Like the signatories of the appeal for freedoms and against the mortifying ideas of the extreme right (, we all feel the urgency of building a strong and united response that brings together the alliance of freedom, work and a sustainable future.”

Individual supporters can add their name to a list of signatories backing the day of demonstrations and its intentions at

Member comments

  1. Not a bad thing in my opinion, however, I have to ask if that is the real danger. For example, the UK currently has the most opaque government in living memory. I’m more afraid of the government/establishment closing ranks every time a legitimate challenge to their absolute power is posed.

  2. I don’t know where this idea of ‘absolute power’ comes from. UK and France have a democratic system that prevents either party having ‘absolute power’, apart that is, from the power to govern which they were elected to do anyway. Corruption and dishonesty is endemic to politics and power, both left and right, but they have to answer to the voting population every few years.
    I object being told what to think by the unions and being co-opted into being cannon fodder and/or taken hostage in their never ending battles with employers. It seems to me the unions regularly hold the population to ransom – they need a good hand-bagging. I don’t share their ideology and I resent been inconvenienced by their pursuit of their own agendas.

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Prosecutors: No new rape inquiry for France’s disabilities minister

France's disabilities minister will not face a new inquiry "as things stand" over a rape allegation that surfaced just after his nomination by President Emmanuel Macron last week, prosecutors have said, citing the anonymity of the alleged victim.

Prosecutors: No new rape inquiry for France's disabilities minister

Damien Abad has faced growing pressure to resign after the news website Mediapart reported the assault claims by two women dating from over a decade ago, which he has denied.

One of the women, identified only by her first name, Margaux, filed a rape complaint in 2017 that was later dismissed by prosecutors.

The other woman, known only as Chloe, told Mediapart that in 2010 she had blacked out after accepting a glass of champagne from Abad at a bar in Paris, and woke up in her underwear in pain with him in a hotel room. She believes she may have been drugged.

She did not file an official complaint, but the Paris prosecutors’ office said it was looking into the case after being informed by the Observatory of Sexist and Sexual Violence in Politics, a group formed by members of France’s MeToo movement.

“As things stand, the Paris prosecutors’ office is not following up on the letter” from the observatory, it said, citing “the inability to identify the victim of the alleged acts and therefore the impossibility of proceeding to a hearing.”

In cases of sexual assault against adults, Paris prosecutors can open an inquiry only if an official complaint is made, meaning the victim must give their identity.

Abad has rejected the calls to resign in order to ensure the new government’s “exemplarity,” saying that he is innocent and that his own condition of arthrogryposis, which limits the movement of his joints, means sexual relations can occur only with the help of a partner.

The appointment of Abad as minister for solidarities and people with disabilities in a reshuffle last Friday was seen as a major coup for Macron, as the 42-year-old had defected from the right-wing opposition.

The new prime minister, Elisabeth Borne, said she was unaware of the allegations before Abad’s nomination, but insisted that “If there is new information, if a new complaint is filed, we will draw all the consequences.”

The claims could loom large over parliamentary elections next month, when Macron is hoping to secure a solid majority for his reformist agenda. Abad will be standing for re-election in the Ain department north of Lyon.