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Since Emmanuel Macron was elected President of France on 7 May 2017, a series of protests have been conducted by trade union and left-wing activists in opposition to what protesters consider to be neoliberal policies,[1][2][3] his support of state visits by certain world leaders,[4][5] his positions on labor code reform,[6][7][8] and various comments or policy proposals he has made since becoming president.[9][10]

Protests against Emmanuel Macron
Make our public services great again (23768004778).jpg
Manif fonctionnaires Paris contre les ordonnances Macron (37362381600).jpg
La Fête à Macron, 5 mai 2018 — 66.jpg
Manif fonctionnaires Paris contre les ordonnances Macron (37572386626).jpg
Date7 May 2017 – present
Caused by
MethodsDemonstrations, riots, vandalism, arson, assault

According to Amnesty International, French authorities have used the ongoing state of emergency, which has been in effect since the November 2015 Paris attacks, to suppress protests, using their emergency powers 574 times to stop protests about labor law reforms.[11]



On 8 May 2017, only a few hours after Macron was announced the winner of the 2017 French Presidential Election, union protesters began clashing with French authorities in Paris under fears that Macron's economic program would take away workers’ rights.[12][13] The protest was organised by "Social Front", which had already staged protests before the second round to protest the two frontrunners, Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron.[14] One specific protest organized by the Social Front had 950 to 1,500 protesters[7] with individuals trying to occupy publicly owned buildings like a railway station in Rennes.[15] Nearly 150 protesters were arrested after reports of missiles being thrown at the police and mass vandalism being done.[16]

The 8 May protest was supported by the CGT and SUD unions.[8]



Protest against Macron in Paris on 23 September 2017

After Macron was inaugurated on 15 May 2017, there were numerous warnings from Labour unions about the prospect of a large organized protest.[17][18] The CGT Union has attempted numerous times to organise a large-scale demonstration against Macron with one taking place on 12 September 2017.[19] Macron has actively tried to prevent this by opening Labor code reform negotiations with trade unions.[8] The reception among the unions has been mixed with the head of the FO union supporting the negotiations,[20] the CFDT deciding to stay neutral, not participating in the 12 September protests[21] and the CGT denouncing the negotiations alongside its ally SUD.[6] Jean-Luc Melenchon from La France Insoumise has spoken in support of the 12 September protest encouraging members to attend. Melenchon himself organized a protest on 12 July 2017.[22][23]

US President Donald Trump's state visit to France during Bastile Day was met with protests, protesters gathered around Place de la République to create a "No Trump Zone".[24] Protesters were reportedly protesting about the Trump visit and Macron's policies; with the ranks of the protesters being made up of socialists, pro-Palestinian groups, migrants’ rights activists, environmentalists and anti-fascists.[4] Despite mass protests, 59% of French people approve of Trump's visit.[25]

Following Prime Minister Edouard Philippe's announcement of the plans for immigration reform, a small protest was led by a group of LGBT activists in Paris holding up a sign reading "Macron starves migrants, queers without borders"[9]

A series of protests by wine producers in the South of France have been ongoing since Francois Hollande's presidency. These demonstrations generally involve arson, sabotage and assault.[10] These protests are caused by the importation of wine rather than buying it from French producers and the loss of culture. These protests have led to a 25% decrease in sales for Spanish wine producers.[26] Spanish tankers transporting wine are usually the target of these attacks.[27][28]

Pro-Palestinian protesters began to demonstrate against Macron offering Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu a place at the Paris Holocaust Ceremony.[29] The French Communist Party also opposed Netanyahu's visit. The organizers of the protest were unknown but Le Muslim Post, a religious radioshow promoted the demonstration, encouraging listeners to attend.[30]

23 March 2018Edit

200,000 rallied against Macron nationwide.[31]

19 April 2018Edit

Tens of thousands of striking rail workers, public sector staff and students rallied across France against President Emmanuel Macron. The SNCF and CGT were the major unions in the protests against plans by Macron to remove job-for-life guarantees and pension privileges for new recruits.[32]

13 May 2018Edit

Transport workers continued to protest against rampant privatisation efforts in France. Key SNCF services were reduced on Sunday.[33]

26 May 2018Edit

A day after the Emmanuel Macron "suggested he could be close to victory in a public battle over his reform agenda,"[34] several thousands people across France, led by CGT trade union and some 80 other organizations protested against Macron's reforms of the public sector, described by the organizers as imbalanced and "brutal."[35] According to CGT 80,000 people participated in the protest in Paris, and 250,000 came out across the country. However, France Police said that 21,000 people participated in the Paris protests and that 35 protesters were detained for various "offences".[36] Seven police officers were injured.[37] Police fired tear gas and deployed 2000 officers to the event and the demonstrators were holding placards reading "Stop Macron!".[38]

Yellow Vests protestsEdit

A gilets jaunes protest in Mont-de-Marsan on 17 November 2018

On October 2018, Macron announced that the carbon tax would rise in 2019. This was seen as a move crippling the rural class who had no other choice than to use the car and could not afford more expensive fuel. On 17 November 2018, protests occurred in most major cities, and highways were blocked. Protests started again next saturday and are still occurring on every saturdays as of June 2019. This movement is noticed for having no official leader and its independance ,in spite of attempts of recovery by the France Insoumise (Unsubmitted France) and the Rassemblement National (National Rally) parties.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "France: Struggle over workplace rights looms as Macron secures power". Green Left Weekly. 1 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  2. ^ Haddad, Tareq (7 May 2017). "French riot police fire gas canisters in face-off with anti-capitalist groups". International Business Times UK. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  3. ^ "Ready to use those tough negotiating skills, Monsieur Macron?". Daily Mailaccess-date = 22 July 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Anti-Trump protests erupt in Paris as President attends Bastille Day rally". The Independent. 14 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  5. ^ "Protesters in Paris rally against Israeli PM's visit". Al Jazeera. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  6. ^ a b "Macron vs unions vs other unions". POLITICO. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  7. ^ a b "France election: Teenagers protest at candidates Macron and Le Pen". BBC News. 27 April 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  8. ^ a b c "Subscribe to read". Financial Times. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  9. ^ a b "LGBT activists protest French president Emmanuel Macron over asylum plan". Attitude Magazine. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  10. ^ a b Williams, David (16 July 2017). "Wine, protest and Macron: why southern French wine producers are so angry". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  11. ^ "France: Unchecked clampdown on protests under guise of fighting terrorism". Amnesty International. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  12. ^ "Paris protest shows the challenges facing Macron". Sky News. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  13. ^ Paris, Adam Sage | Charles Bremner,. "Left-wing protesters march against Macron". Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  14. ^ "IN PICS: Just one day after Emmanuel Macron's election and Paris holds its first protest". 8 May 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  15. ^ ""Ni Le Pen, ni Macron" : manifestations houleuses de lycéens à Paris, Rennes et Nantes". Le Parisien. 27 April 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  16. ^ "French election: Emmanuel Macron elected new president – CBBC Newsround". 8 May 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  17. ^ "The French President Is Spending His Summer Fighting Unions". Bloomberg L.P. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  18. ^ "French far-left leader calls day of protest, says Macron drunk on power". Reuters. 5 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  19. ^ "French CGT union calls for Sept 12 strike against labour reforms". Reuters. 27 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  20. ^ "Jean-Claude Mailly : " Avec le gouvernement, il y a une vraie concertation " | Force Ouvrière". Force Ouvrière (in French). Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  21. ^ "Laurent Berger (CFDT) : "Il n'y a ni confiance aveugle ni défiance généralisée" au sujet de la réforme du Code du travail" (in French). Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  22. ^ Editorial, Reuters. "French far-left leader calls day of protest, says Macron drunk on power". Reuters UK. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  23. ^ "French far-left leader calls day of protest, says Macron drunk on power". Reuters. 5 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  24. ^ "Protesters set up 'No Trump Zone' in Paris". The Independent. 13 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  25. ^ "Most French approve of Trump's visit (even after all he's said about France)". 13 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  26. ^ "Angry French winemakers destroy Spanish wine in protest over imports | Toronto Star". Toronto Star. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  27. ^ "Angry French winemakers attack Spanish lorries, block depot – Decanter". Decanter. 18 January 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  28. ^ "Furious French wine makers hijack Spanish tankers, pouring 90,000 bottles down the drain". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  29. ^ "French groups to protest Netanyahu attendance at Paris Holocaust ceremony". The Jerusalem Post | Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  30. ^ "Protest planned for Paris Holocaust memorial event during Netanyahu visit". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  31. ^ Mowat, Laura (23 March 2018). "PARIS ERUPTS: Furious scenes on streets of France as 200,000 rally against Macron".
  32. ^ "Thousands protest against Macron reforms across France | France News". Al Jazeera. 19 April 2018. Retrieved 6 May 2018.
  33. ^ Bellamy, Daniel. "Emmanuel Macron faces a wave of strikes and protests in France". The Economist. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  34. ^ Chazan, David (26 May 2018). "Anti-Macron protests as president claims victory is close in battle with unions". The Telegraph. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  35. ^ "Thousands across France protest President Macron's 'brutal' policies". Los Angeles Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  36. ^ Staff. "France's far left leads protests against Macron reforms". U.S. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  37. ^ "Seven police officers hurt by masked thugs as riots break out in Paris". Daily Mail. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  38. ^ "Macron Is Depicted as a King Amid Protests of 'Soft Dictatorship'". The New York Times. 5 May 2018. Archived from the original on 5 May 2018. Retrieved 29 May 2018.