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Paris bans French 'freedom convoy' protests from the ca...

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Paris bans French ‘freedom convoy’ protests from the capital

epa09740748 A placard reads 'Macron, we'll piss you off too' as members of the 'Freedom Convoy 2022' gather before heading to Paris, in Nice, France, 09 February 2022. A series of convoy demonstrations has been taking place in France to call for the lifting of all Covid-19 restrictions and vaccine mandates, in light of the ongoing protest in Canada, where truck drivers have been rallying against the government-imposed mandatory Covid-19 vaccine to enter the country. EPA-EFE/SEBASTIEN NOGIER
By Reuters
10 Feb 2022 0

PARIS, Feb 10 (Reuters) - French "freedom convoy" motorists protesting against Covid-19 restrictions will be blocked from entering Paris, the French capital's police authority said on Thursday.

Protesters set out from southern France on Wednesday in what they call a “freedom convoy” that will converge on Paris and Brussels to demand an end to Covid-19 restrictions, inspired by demonstrators who have gridlocked the Canadian capital Ottawa.

Departures are expected from more cities across France on Thursday.

The Paris prefecture said the protesters would be prohibited from entering the capital from Feb. 11-14, citing the risk of public disorder.

In Canada, horn-blaring demonstrations demanding an end to Canadian Covid-19 vaccine mandates for cross-border truck drivers are now spilling to key Canada-United States border crossings.

Copycat protests have also sprung up in Australia and New Zealand. Protesters waved the Canadian flag as France’s “freedom convoy” got underway.

Motorists who violated the order not to protest within Paris risked two years in prison, a 4,500 euro fine and suspended driver’s license, the prefecture cautioned.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Writing by Richard Lough Editing by Tassilo Hummel and Toby Chopra)

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