In Bure on the 15 August 2017, around 800 people set off on a demo (numbers like this had never been seen before for a non-declared demo in Bure). The prefecture deliberately chose a strategy of aggression and asphyxiation that led to a number of injured people. The police deployed were twice the number deployed for the demo of the 18 February 2017, 15 riot cop vans and a water cannon were counted.
Submitted to Enough is Enough.
Note: Enough is Enough is not organizing any of these events, we are publishing this text for people across the US and Europe to be able to see what is going on and for documentation only.
The route of the demo headed towards Saudron and not the “laboratory”,
chosen to avoid the fortified red zone and all the blue team. The
objective was to arrive in a big field between the village of Saudron
the “Espace Technologique” (an Andra Building) to highlight a very
important Neolithic site discovered by archaeologists and ignored by
Meanwhile the prefecture deliberately attempted to provoke people in the
middle of Bure, 100m after the start of the demo. Many riot cop vans
were posted at the edge of the village. Instead of falling into this
trap, protesters intelligently decided to avoid confrontation and to go
on a 4km detour across fields to get to the field that they wanted to go
to. Just before reaching this field on the edge of Saudronm riot cop
vans and the water canon were deployed followed by the firing of tear
gas which of course led to clashes in the middle of the village….
the police operation
apart from lots of tear gas and the water cannon being used, police also
used lanceurs de balle de défense (small hard rubber balls fired from a
police weapon), fired above the waist (which is not “legally”
authorised) injuring people. They also used the diffrent grenades (stun
grenades and flash bang grenades) thrown by hand but also using
launchers that fired the grenades tens of metres behind the clashes that
were taking place, causing serious injuries.
from a small part of the clashes at the end of the demo the following
police weapons were found (at least) 15 stun grenades, 12 small hard
rubber balls fired from lanceurs de balle de défense, 4 flash bang
grenades. This gives you an overall idea for the day
list of injured people
The medic teams counted more than 30 injured people, including a couple
with serious injuries and 3 people were hosplitalised. if we take a
look at one person hospitalised with a serious injury
one person had their foot torn apart after the explosion of a flash bang
grenade causing a triple open fracture on the bones of the foot.
Surgeons that looked at the victim (after the first aid done by the
medic teams) are now talking about the risk of amputating the toes
because of the presence of plastic melted from the shoe into the tissue.
A photo is available here but is very gruesome to look at:
While injured people were being evacuated, police targeted people that
were helping the injured, causing panic and more injuries.
For the more seriously injured people, the state ambulance/fire crews
were called but we could see their difficulties in dealing with these
kind of injuries for which they didn’t seem trained to deal with.
Should these crews be trained to treat “war” injuries ou should these so
called “non lethal arms” that mutilate and kill people stopped being
This record of events is very heavy and adds to the previous demo on the
18 February 2017 where 20 people were injured and 2 hospitalised.
Potential repression for the hospitalised people
not only did the police injure, mutilate and maybe cause amputations,
they even went to hassle the injured in the hospitals, sometimes before
they had even been treated to interview them or even conviscate personal
One person hospitalied in Neufchateau saw the police come into their
bedroom to control their ID.
in the hospital in Nancy, police interviewed the person with a severe
foot injury, in the afternoon of the 16 August. One and a half hours of
tiring interrogation done by the people responsible for a possible
amputation. One out of two questions concerned the other people present
at the demo. “I’ll accept the interrogation but I have nothing to say,
you’ve ruined my life” the reply of the kind cop “we are here for you,
not against you, here to help you”. 90 minutes later the police came
back with orders to check the person’s clothes. “I’m tired, you’re
pressuring me and it’s the second time that you’ve come into my
bedroom!” Answer “I was kind, I didn’t have to be”
A strategy of repression that is more and more brutal
It’s far away from the times when Andra and the Prefecture decided not
to make a fuss, to avoid showing that people were contesting the
project. Since a few months the police strategy has started to be more
and more aggressive: daily provocations and intimidation, stopping
demos, serious injuries. Instead of protecting the laboratory and the
other infrastructures which was the case in the past, the riot cops
received orders to target protesters in the middle of villages,
favouring division, injuring, mutilating…just how far will they go?
The objective of this kind of press release is not to fall into a
counter propaganda of a victim, a sad summary or warrior overkill. It
is to better record the attacks of police on protests and to offer an
account on the continuing repression in Bure. We’ve taken note of this
strategy and in the months and years to come, we’ll look at how to
continue in lots of different ways.
testimony from Robin, with a seriously injured foot
Robin wrote this testimony on the 16 August, from his hospital bedroom
to share with everybody:
“I am Robin, the person that got a foot injury from one of the number of
flash bang grenades that the riot cops fired onto protesters, near Bure
on Tuesday 15 August 2017. I’m in the hospital of Nancy. My foot is in
a terrible state, the grenade dug 3 cm into my foot with a diameter of
13 cm. Most of the bones are broken. Some have even disappeared,
pulverised. The shoe exploded, the plastic melted into the wound, so
much that an infection is likely which would mean the amputation of 5
toes. Added to that are 30 pieces of shrapnel in the other leg.
The riot cops fired around 15 flash bang grenades, they were not in
Just before my foot was hit, I saw a grenade explode at head height.
For me the objective of the police force at that time was clearly to
injure or kill, with the goal of terrorising those who fight and those
who are not fighting yet. On the medic team stretcher that I want to
underline their courage and efficiency, I heard more grenades explosing.
Despite the brutal change in my life that this injury has caused in my
life as a father to 2 very young children, I call out more than ever to
continue in this struggle, to get active or get back into it for some.
Write to Robin and other injured people: to write and show your support
to Robin and other people injured during the demo, don’t hestitate to
Maison de résistance à Bure, 2 rue de l’Église, 55290 BURE, France.
correspondence and support messages will be forwarded to them.
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