France: peasants and activists denounce the hypocrisy of the vote in favour of CETA

On July 23, 2019, the National Assembly ratified CETA despite the challenge from civil society. A year later, the text is still awaiting passage through the Senate. To call on the government to suspend the transatlantic trade treaty, activists from Greenpeace, Attac and the Confédération Paysanne covered the parliamentary offices with slogans such as “Climate hypocrite”.

Early this morning, activists from Greenpeace France, Attac and the Confédération Paysanne covered the offices of parliamentarians who had ratified CETA, to make them listen to reason and demand that they completely abandon the free trade agreement. Across France, 20 local groups mobilized to ask senators to challenge CETA, and MPs to review their copy.

A year ago, the parliamentary majority had difficulty in voting CETA in the National Assembly, while many citizens had already protested against this agreement for many years. It is highly hypocritical of the government that wants to be a pioneer in the fight against climate change – which a few hours earlier applauded activist Greta Thunberg in the Chamber and called for the necessary responsibilities in the face of the climate emergency, the activists said. 

The text is yet to come up for a vote in the Senate. But CETA remains incompatible with the Paris Agreement as several reports, commissioned by the government, have shown. Notably, the Schubert commission points out that the agreement is conspicuous by its failure to take climate issues into account. 

Emmanuel Macron seems to have quickly forgotten these conclusions: on June 29, he rejected the proposal of the Citizen’s Convention for the climate which called for the abandonment of CETA, specifies that it is necessary to continue to assess the content of this agreement, and that in the event of non-compliance with the Paris trajectory, he would be the first to abandon it. “The French are not mistaken: 82% believe that France should oppose any free trade agreement with countries that do not sufficiently reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.”, the protesters added. 

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Publiée par Confédération Paysanne sur Jeudi 23 juillet 2020


This article is an edited version of an original piece, in French, that appeared on the website of Confederation Paysanne