Man held over Macron slapping was medieval martial arts fanatic By Reuters

2/2 © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron is protected by a safety member after getting slapped by a member of the general public throughout a go to in Tain-L’Hermitage, France, on this nonetheless picture taken from video on June 8, 2021. BFMTV/ReutersTV by way of REUTERS 2/2 PARIS (Reuters) – The person alleged


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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron is protected by a safety member after getting slapped by a member of the general public throughout a go to in Tain-L’Hermitage, France, on this nonetheless picture taken from video on June 8, 2021. BFMTV/ReutersTV by way of REUTERS

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PARIS (Reuters) – The person alleged to have slapped French President Emmanuel Macron within the face ran a membership for lovers of medieval swordsmanship and had no earlier legal file, sources near the investigation mentioned on Wednesday.

A police supply recognized the suspect as 28-year-old Damien Tarel. He’s below investigation for assault in opposition to a public official, the native prosecutor mentioned.

Macron, who has been on a tour to take the heart beat of the nation after the pandemic and fewer than a yr earlier than the following presidential election, was hit on Tuesday throughout a walkabout in southern France as he greeted a small crowd of onlookers.

Tarel, wearing a khaki T-shirt, then shouted “Down with Macronia” and “Montjoie Saint Denis”, the battle cry of the French military when the nation was a monarchy.

A supply near the investigation described him as somebody who was “a bit misplaced, a bit geeky, a little bit of a gamer”.

Tarel and a second man have been nonetheless in police custody on Wednesday, the supply added. The cost of assault in opposition to a public official carries a most sentence of three years in jail and a forty five,000 euro superb.

Tarel managed a neighborhood membership of martial arts lovers targeted on the apply of historic European martial arts, together with conventional swordsmanship.

Macron mentioned he had not feared for his security, and continued shaking palms with members of the general public after he was struck.

In an interview with the Dauphine Libere newspaper after the incident, Macron mentioned: “You can’t have violence, or hate, both in speech or actions. In any other case, it is democracy itself that’s threatened.”

Macron has been targetted earlier than by disenchanted residents. In 2016, when he was economic system minister, he was pelted with eggs by hardleft commerce unionists over labour reforms and two years later was left shaken after he was heckled by anti-government protesters.

“We will disagree with what President Macron has completed. We vote subsequent yr and there shall be loads of individuals voting in opposition to him, mentioned Parisian Louis Bernard “however this electoral marketing campaign can’t be based mostly on violence.”

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