Amid the ongoing violence in France, police unions which represent half of the French police tweeted a statement on Friday: “Today the police are in combat because we are at war. Tomorrow we will be in resistance and the government will have to become aware of it.”
France has been witnessing violent protests, acts of looting, arson, and vandalism after an officer shot a teenager, Nahel M, outside Paris on Tuesday, 27 June. The violent spree has been continuing in France for nearly a week now. Apart from countless incidences of arson and looting, the rioters, on 30 June burned down the largest library in Marseilles city in Alcazar. Yesterday the Daily Mail reported that France is now on red alert as Macron faces calls to impose a “state of emergency” after marauding gangs with guns were seen rampaging in Marseille and police headquarters was ransacked in a fourth night of chaos.
“We are at war,” the police unions explained in a subsequent tweet, “is an image relating what our colleagues undergo every day in the field. We are facing an urban guerrilla warfare and no longer facing urban violence, so it is against an urban war that our colleagues are fighting to win.”
And they explained what they meant by resistance: “When our organisations evoke resistance. We are talking about union resistance, union battles to come, resistance shown by our colleagues in the face of the wrath of those who want to sow chaos. Chaos wanted by the harmful, those who want to harm the values of our republic.”
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Below are three statements tweeted by UNSA Police which explain their position. We have translated the statements into English using Google Translate.
Unacceptable urban violence
For two weeks now, our colleagues have been facing, throughout the national territory, groups of rioters determined to sow chaos.
We wish to underline with the greatest firmness that nothing can justify the blind and devastating violence currently raging in France. Damage and acts of violence do not in any way constitute a legitimate form of expression or claim. The first victims of these events are the citizens themselves, who wake up in a climate close to the insurrection.
Refusals to comply are a scourge whose trivialisation inevitably leads to human tragedies.
Statements from various public, political, sporting or influential personalities are often irresponsible and only fuel a climate of extreme tension.
The presumption of innocence must apply in the same way from the citizen to the police officer.
It is essential to remember that there is no justice online or in the street. It is imperative to let the judicial system take its course and avoid any hasty judgments.
In these difficult times, we would like to express our unconditional support for all the police who, on a daily basis, ensure the safety of our fellow citizens, often at the risk of their own lives.
The UNSA Police wishes a speedy recovery to all of our injured colleagues and will continue to ensure the protection of citizens and the maintenance of republican order.
Now that’s enough …
Facing these savage hordes, asking for calm is no longer enough, it must be imposed!
Restoring the republican order and putting the apprehended beyond the capacity to harm should be the only political signals to give.
In the face of such exactions, the police family must stand together.
Our colleagues, like the majority of citizens, can no longer bear the tyranny of these violent minorities.
The time is not for union action, but for combat against these “pests”. Surrendering, capitulating, and pleasing them by laying down arms are not the solutions in light of the gravity of the situation.
All means must be put in place to restore the rule of law as quickly as possible.
Once restored, we already know that we will relive this mess that we have been enduring for decades.
For these reasons, Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police will take their responsibilities and warn the government from now on that at the end, we will be in action and without concrete measures for the legal protection of the Police, an appropriate penal response, significant means provided, the police will judge the extent of the consideration given.
Today the police are in combat because we are at war. Tomorrow we will be in resistance and the government will have to become aware of it.
[The tweet was headed “A distortion of our words by certain politicians!”]
Text explanation for dummies
Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police protest against the distortion that certain politicians may make of the remarks used in their press release dated 30/06-2023 “Now that’s enough…”
Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police protest against the stigmatisation suffered by police officers and their responsible and representative trade unions.
Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police say to these politicians that they are in the wrong fight, and that these two organisations will no longer accept being insulted and slandered in this way.
Some text explanations for evil spirits: “We are at war” is an image relating what our colleagues undergo every day in the field. We are facing an urban guerrilla warfare and no longer facing urban violence, so it is against an urban war that our colleagues are fighting to win.
This imagery expression was used at the time for another subject, that of the covid, by President Macron himself and few were worried!
When our organisations evoke resistance. We are talking about union resistance, union battles to come, resistance shown by our colleagues in the face of the wrath of those who want to sow chaos. Chaos wanted by the harmful, those who want to harm the values of our republic.
Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police will continue the fight to defend the values of the Republic, to split the Institution and protect the police against the lightning of those who want to destroy them.
No offense to our defenders, our organisations will continue to fight for these values that are dear to us.
National offices Alliance Police Nationale and UNSA Police.
Featured Image: Dozens of burning barricades are erected in Collombes. Ongoing tension, 1 July 2023 from Nanterre, France taken by Clément Lanot on Twitter
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