By Pierre Mabut:
Demonstrations greet new French president
19 May 2007
On the day of Gaullist Nicolas Sarkozy’s inauguration as the new president of France, May 16, demonstrations by youth took place in a number of major cities.
Although generally small in size, the protests’ frustration and anger came in response to fears that Sarkozy intends to rapidly put in place his ‘reform’ of higher education.
In Paris, 1,500 students took to the streets, after a week of police harassment against protesters throughout France.
One student demonstrating in the Place de la Nation told Libération that “there have been more than 1,000 arrests in a week, more than during the anti-CPE [First Job Contract] struggle last year.”
Another was worried that he had not heard from a friend given a summary four-month sentence on the night of May 6 and jailed in Fleury-Mérogis prison.
Students complained that the police repression was much harsher than in the anti-CPE demonstrations last year.
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