French police should be allowed to use LIVE bullets on Yellow Vest protesters, ex-minister says

Luc Ferry, a 68-year-old conservative, justified his stance by highlighting the growing law and order crisis facing the country.

When asked about the possibility of wounding or death, Ferry had a simple response: “So what?”

He said: “Listen, frankly, when you see guys beating up an unfortunate policeman on the floor, that’s when they should use their weapons once and for all. That’s enough!”

Once an Education Minister and now a full-time philosopher, Ferry said: “What I don’t understand is that we don’t give the means to the police to put an end to this violence.”

Police were attacked in major cities including Paris last Saturday on an "Act VIII" Day of Rage by the Yellow Vests.

The movement – which is named after the high viz jackets all motorists have to carry in France – also set fire to buildings as police batons, tear gas and water cannon were used against them.

Particularly aggressive scenes were filmed in the French capital, where a former champion boxer beat up two paramilitary police officer on a Seine bridge.

Speaking to Classic Radio, Mr Ferry added: “We have the fourth largest army in the world, and it is able to put an end to this crap.

“These kind of thugs, this kind of crap from the extreme Right, the extreme Left and from the housing estates that come to hit the police, that’s enough.”

The Classic Radio presenter corrected Ferry, saying that the majority of the rioters were not from suburban high rises, but were instead working class people from the provinces.

Those Yellow Vests arrested so far tend to have jobs, and largely hold conservative views.

The ex-minister conceded: “The problem is that it is a movement that has attracted the support of 80 per cent of the French. When we get to that point, we have to go back to the electorate.”

Ferry is a former lover of Carla Bruni, the model and pop singer who became Prime Minister Nicolas Sarkozy’s third wife when he was in office.

Current President Emmanuel Macron’s government has launched a crackdown on the Yellow Vests, pledging a new anti-riot law to deal with them.

On Monday the Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe, went on live TV to announce the tougher measures.

The government wants to draft new legislation that will ban known troublemakers from protests, and will stop masks being worn at demonstrations.

Philippe also announced that there will be 80,000 police and gendarmes – paramilitary police – on the streets of France this weekend, including 5000 in Paris.

He said: “Those who question our institutions will not have the last word.”


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