France Postpones Compulsory Shots for Guadeloupe Health Workers After General Uprising
Can't cancel or it will give serfs in the mainland ideas
France has postponed implementing a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for health workers in Martinique and Guadeloupe after the measure spurred widespread protests on the French territories in which police officers were injured and journalists attacked.
The two Caribbean islands have been hit by unrest over the last week after the French government imposed tougher measures to curb the spread of the virus.
Compulsory vaccinations for health workers, a measure already introduced on the French mainland, had fuelled resentment among the islands’ majority Black population.
The French health ministry said in a statement after a crisis government meeting on Friday that it had decided to postpone to Dec. 31 “finalising the implementation of the vaccine mandate” in Martinique and Guadeloupe. [Seems like a small concession to try and sap the momentum of the revolt.]
It had put those who refused inoculation on unpaid leave but now says it will give those suspended more time for individual “dialogue” with their managers while still getting paid.
Some on the islands have called the mandate a throwback to France’s slavery era, insisting that they should be allowed to make their own choices about health treatment.
The French government meeting came as the riots in Martinique were still ongoing, a source close to the French overseas minister said.
“Last night was clearly more intense than the nights before,” a local spokesman for the French state told Reuters on Friday.
Source: France 24
Shots were fired overnight at security forces and journalists on the French Caribbean island of Martinique amid violent protests against COVID-19 restrictions, France’s interior minister said on Friday.
Several police officers have been injured, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin tweeted. He added that 10 people have been arrested.
Journalists from French television, news and photo agencies were attacked on Thursday night, media group Altice said in a statement, confirming earlier remarks by the minister. One police officer was seriously injured and needed surgery, local authorities said.
Prosecutors said masked protesters had also tried to set fire to the gate of the official residence of the prefect, the most senior representative of the French central state there, but no significant damage had been caused.
French government spokesman Gabriel Attal denounced the “unacceptable” violence.
In Guadeloupe, where protests began last week, there is a historic mistrust of the government’s handling of health crises after many people were systematically exposed to toxic pesticides used in banana plantations in the 1970s.
Source: Associated Press
Citizens of Guadeloupe march in the largest protests in the history of the island today against COVID vaccine mandates.pic.twitter.com/k0RRBu1Zrh
— Michael P Senger (@MichaelPSenger) November 27, 2021
#Guadeloupe 🇬🇵 🇫🇷 Thousands of people demonstrate in Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe against the health pass and the mandatory vaccination as well as the excrutiating cost of living. pic.twitter.com/OpxCNG5XDv
— La French ConAction..🇫🇷 (@LFConaction) November 27, 2021
France postpones vaccine mandate after violent unrest in Martinique and Guadeloupe pic.twitter.com/t8wSQr4Tad
— Mike (@IDontrustBiden) November 28, 2021
Guadeloupe's union-organized uprising against the imposition of discriminatory vaccine passports by the French neocolonial power continues into its 10th day, as Macron sends in more militarized police to crack down on the rebellions pic.twitter.com/sIwVuHT3OR
— Max Blumenthal (@MaxBlumenthal) November 25, 2021