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#GiletsJaunes #Nantes, February 2: Another afternoon of anger

Gilets Jaunes in Nantes: Several thousand demonstrators. Banks targetted. The far right pushed aside. Building the general strike.

Originally published by Nantes Révoltée Facebook page. Edited machine Translation by Enough 14.

Note: Enough 14 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.

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Almost 10,000 rubber bullets. Tens of thousands of grenades. Thousands of arrests. There are now countless people who are marked in their flesh and freedom by repression. But the ongoing revolt movement is not weakening, despite the fear. Therefor Saturday February 2 act twelve of the Yellow Vests took place.

In Nantes, the demonstration started on Cours des 50 Otages in the early afternoon. To refuse the routes imposed by the police for weeks, a division of the demonstration was organized. Two parades to reach the rue de Strasbourg. But the first part was blocked in front of the prefecture, the other one attacked by the BAC a few streets away. Reunification along the Erdre, and first gases. Everyone leaves for the Cathedral in a tense atmosphere, then entered Bouffay. In the narrow streets, the demonstration could finally march without the omnipresence of the police. Slogans, a good atmosphere and determination. In the demonstration with about 4000 people, many slogans, signs and banners in support of those of the movement who got injured.

The CRS prevented the celebration from continuing, blocking access to Place Royale. Rue du Calvaire, new dam. This time, the demonstrators did not want to be isolated on the Cours des 50 Otages, transformed every Saturday into a shooting range. Gas burst. New departure for Bouffay.

About fifteen extreme right-wing militants, royalists and Neo-Nazis, were spotted in the demonstration. They belong to this racist movement that has always supported repression, that divides the oppressed, and that attacked demonstrators the previous week. They were thrown out by Yellow Vests under applause. A far-right myrmidon brought crutches, not for health reasons, but to hit demonstrators. He ran away with his legs all over the place. The fascists took refuge behind a line of BAC cops that fired grenades to protect them.

The demonstration started again. Mc Donald took a few more shots. Review of the Course after charges from the BAC. The rue du Calvaire, blocked earlier, was finally invaded. The objective? The former court transformed into a luxury hotel on Place Aristide Briand. A symbol. On the way, BNP’s headquarters had its grids broken up, receives paint. A fire was lit in front of the entrance. The parade will not reach the luxury hotel. The places reserved for the rich are always well guarded. Gas, clashes, and the demo returned to rue du Calvaire.

The demonstration dissipates in the city centre. Artists painted inventive slogans on the walls. Banks, which were barricaded, are being torn apart after demonstrators broke into the iron grids. In Commerce, a very violent and concentrated charge of all law enforcement personnel caused several serious injuries, including two serious injuries in the face, near the eyes and the jaw. Coffee shops are drowned in gas. The BAC entered a kebab restaurant hitting people inside, and picked up a person’s phone while filming.

Square Daviais, the remaining demonstrators were pushed back to the west. The Yellow Vests are still numerous, but scattered all along the tram line. The CRSs receive projectiles from all sides: demonstrators, passers-by, teenagers or grandmothers. Like every Saturday, die-hard people wanted to stay on the street as long as possible. At the crossroads of the trams, a line of CRS trucks made dangerous turns. A rain of projectiles were hitting the trucks. The exasperation is obvious. Fireworks were thrown, like at the end of each demonstration from now on. As if it was a matter of celebrating a victory: putting this column of CRS at a distance.

Night was falling, there are only about a hundred demonstrators left. Exchanges of grenades and fireworks. The last remaining demonstrators witnessed an arbitrary arrest. A person arrested by motorcycle police officers, offended by a mockery about their vehicle no longer starting. A clear revenge. The evening continues with a banquet on the island of Nantes in the evening.

One thing is certain, the determination remains intact. The demonstrators remain numerous in Nantes as elsewhere, despite the adversity, and although several groups of Yellow Vests from the region called to travel to Paris. It is therefore a tenacious movement that is rooted in time. But it is a question of going beyond the ritual of weekly clashes to make the government bend. Throughout the afternoon, a sign read: “Tuesday, February 5: All on strike” was held.

So, see you on Tuesday for the general strike…

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