Spring is usually the start of “protest season”, so I wasn’t surprised when I heard a demonstration was planned this Saturday. The issue? Nantes’ new airport plan. The mayor wants to build a brand new airport, and some constituents argue that they are being expropriated.
At noon, the police force deployed already seemed pretty disproportionate.
A chopper was flying above the city. The main streets were heavily patrolled by the gendarmerie (soldiers employed on police duty) and the CRS (riot control forces). It felt like being under siege.
Meanwhile, protesters were blocking the city’s main arteries with a long lineup of tractors.
Eventually, the protest settled place du Cirque. Yeah, it wasn’t going to end up well.