Take the pledge to vote

For a better tommorow#AajSawaroApnaKal
  • I agree to receive emails from News18

  • I promise to vote in this year's elections no matter what the odds are.
  • Please check above checkbox.

    SUBMIT

Thank you for
taking the pledge

Vote responsibly as each vote counts
and makes a diffrence

Disclaimer:

Issued in public interest by HDFC Life. HDFC Life Insurance Company Limited (Formerly HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Limited) (“HDFC Life”). CIN: L65110MH2000PLC128245, IRDAI Reg. No. 101 . The name/letters "HDFC" in the name/logo of the company belongs to Housing Development Finance Corporation Limited ("HDFC Limited") and is used by HDFC Life under an agreement entered into with HDFC Limited. ARN EU/04/19/13618
LIVE TV DownloadNews18 App
News18 English
News18 » World
2-min read

Splits Among French 'Yellow Vests' Deepen as Some Eye EU Elections

Yet though they have so far drawn up a list of only 10 candidates, they could prove a disruptive force, with one opinion poll this week suggesting they could steal votes from the far-right and inadvertently help President Emmanuel Macron.

Reuters

Updated:January 25, 2019, 8:55 PM IST
facebookTwitterskypewhatsapp
Splits Among French 'Yellow Vests' Deepen as Some Eye EU Elections
Protesters wearing yellow vests are seen behind a fire as they attend a demonstration of the "yellow vests" movement in Angers, France. (Image: Reuters)
Loading...

Paris: A decision by a small group of "yellow vest" protesters to contest May's European Parliament elections has exposed deep splits within their amorphous anti-government movement about whether and how to become a more organised political force.

Yet though they have so far drawn up a list of only 10 candidates, they could prove a disruptive force, with one opinion poll this week suggesting they could steal votes from the far-right and inadvertently help President Emmanuel Macron, whose policies triggered their original protests.

Accused by some activists of betraying the movement, Ingrid Levavasseur, who leads the new grouping's candidate list, said on Friday she sought change through political dialogue, and she distanced herself from the movement's violent fringe.

"We want to bring democratic debate (to French politics)," the 31-year-old assistant nurse told RMC radio. "We don't all want to overthrow the president."

The yellow vests, named after high-visibility vests French drivers are required to keep in their cars, began their protests in November against fuel tax hikes that Macron then scrapped.

They quickly spiralled into a broader movement against the political elite and inequality, triggering some of the capital's worst street violence in decades.

But the movement is leaderless and split along open faultlines: between radicals who want to oust Macron and moderates who back dialogue, and between those who wish it to remain a grassroots, apolitical movement and those who see an opportunity to break into politics.

"NO POLITICAL CONVICTIONS"

It has been a bruising 48 hours for Levavasseur, who has emerged from obscurity to become a household name in France.

Some yellow vests who see the European Parliament as undemocratic and a waste of money have branded her a "traitor".

"A vote for the 'yellow vests' is a vote for Macron," said Eric Drouet, who heads a faction within the movement called "Angry France".

Another rival, Benjamin Cauchy, asked Levavasseur in a terse exchange on LCI television if she supported a federal Europe or a Europe of member states.

When she replied that she had no position, Cauchy shot back: "You're head of the list and you have no political convictions."

Levavasseur dismissed the accusation that she was betraying the movement: "Let's be clear, if the yellow vests don't run (in the EU elections) someone else will in their name."

The survey by pollster Elabe, published on Wednesday, showed the "yellow vests" winning 13 percent of the vote in France.

It also showed Marine Le Pen's far-right National Rally - formerly the National Front - winning 20.5 percent of votes without a yellow vest list. This fell to 17.5 percent with a yellow vest challenge, while Macron's centrist pro-EU party would suffer only a 1 point fall to 22.5 percent.

Le Pen, who lost to Macron in the second round of France's 2017 presidential election, has appealed for the support of the broad yellow vest movement in the EU elections, speaking of their "healthy popular revolt" against an "incompetent president".

Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time.

| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
Read full article
Loading...
Next Story
Next Story

Also Watch

facebookTwitterskypewhatsapp

Live TV

Countdown To Elections Results
To Assembly Elections 2018 Results