Saturday, November 5, 2011

occupy paris in the house!

You knew it was coming!
Picture Source: France 24
Inspired by Spain’s “Indignados” and New York’s “Occupy” movements, angry French protesters have set up camp in La Défense business district west of Paris. But on the second day of the demonstration, less than half of the already few campers remain.


Like their Spanish, American and British counterparts, the “occupiers” of Paris’ key business district are protesting against the “current global financial system”: the uneven distribution of wealth; globalisation, bank bailouts and austerity measures. Heeding the call of an online campaign, at least 500 young demonstrators pitched their tents on Friday afternoon on the massive esplanade amid towering skyscrapers of multinational firms and banks.

“The goal is to set up camp and stay as long as possible,” the organisers state on the website for “Occupons la Défense”. But despite an unseasonably warm and sunny afternoon, the event failed to attract the impressive numbers its cross-Atlantic and neighbouring counterparts boasted from day one. “I was expecting more people,” said Julie, a 20-year-old participant, looking around the huddle of 20 coloured tents on the vast esplanade. “To make anything happen there needs to be a lot more of us.” Despite the disappointment, Julie wasn’t planning on giving up easily. Neither was Étienne, a 28-year-old student waiting to unfurl his tent. “I’m in it for the long term,” he said, waving his toothbrush and newspapers. “It’s not going to be easy, I know.”

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rather be in paris