Who barks… doesn’t bite? This Tuesday, Gérald Darmanin announced the launch of the procedure for the dissolution of the far left group “Nantes Révoltée”. “I decided to initiate the adversarial process which would allow the dissolution of this de facto grouping, clarified the Minister of the Interior to the National Assembly, in response to a question from the LREM deputy for Loire-Atlantique Valérie Oppelt. Once things are built and we are unassailable, I will propose to the President of the Republic the dissolution of Nantes Révoltée.
Only, in a press release published on Wednesday, the lawyers of the collective ensure that they are not aware of any procedure initiated.
“Does he even know what Nantes Révoltée is and what he blames him for?” The question is asked by Raphaël Kempf, Aïnoha Pascual, Pierre Huriet and Stéphane Vallée, the lawyers of the collective concerned. According to the official speech of Gérald Darmanin, “Nantes Révoltée” would have called for an undeclared demonstration in Nantes “against the state and against the police”.
This Friday evening, incidents occurred on the sidelines of the parade, which brought together around 600 participants. A store window was smashed and the front of a Monoprix degraded. Projectiles were thrown at the police. Protesters then headed to a bar known to host far-right activists. A server and a customer were hit. “Since the El Khomri law [loi Travail, ndlr]this de facto group constantly repeats calls for violence and this weekend against the State and the police”condemned the minister before the National Assembly.
Only, here it is: according to the lawyers, “Nantes Révoltée” would not be a “group” but good “an independent and committed media that covers social and environmental struggles in Nantes and around the world”. Its readership? About 300,000 people. There would therefore be no valid reason to demand such a dissolution. If Gérald Darmanin has recourse to the law of January 10, 1936, allowing the dissolution of certain combat groups and French militias, it would be “because he knows that neither ordinary criminal law nor the provisions relating to press offenses are such as to found a lawsuit against this media”. Also, the use of this over 80-year-old legislation in this context would constitute “an unprecedented step in the repression and restriction of freedom of expression”.
Why would Darmanin threaten “Nantes Revolted” then? The reasons would be, say the lawyers, political. As they recall, the collective documents social struggles, police violence or even the prison issue in a “irreverent”. Yellow vests, anti-sanitary pass demonstrations, for caregivers, anti-fascist rallies… He relays “regular calls to demonstrate”. “Nantes Revoltée displeases Mr. Darmanin”summarize the lawyers, who ask the Minister of the Interior to “to renounce this very hazardous dissolution”.