Thousands in Paris denounce Trump's immigration policies

By REUTERS
February 4, 2017 21:47
2 minute read.

 
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Protesters in Paris marched towards the Eiffel Tower on Saturday (February 4), condemning US President Donald Trump's policies on immigration as a violation of rights and universal values of openness.

Last week, Trump signed an executive order to keep refugees and travellers from seven mainly Muslim countries out of the US

The travel ban, which Trump says is needed to protect the United States against Islamist militants, has sparked travel chaos around the world and condemnation by rights groups who have called it racist and discriminatory.

Around 2,000 protesters, estimated by the Paris prefecture, including Americans and citizens of other countries, joined the march from the Trocadero platform to the Champ de Mars field near the foot of the Eiffel Tower.

"As an American, I'm very concerned about what President Trump's recent actions are going to do both for our country and for people around the world. What he's been doing, his order to build the wall, is completely ridiculous on a number of levels," a lawyer from the US, Kendra Wergin, said.

Protesters said the order was unjust towards people living in the seven countries.

"It's a little bit frightening to see that we can, just by signing a paper, block citizens from movement. These are not dangerous people. It's blaming a majority for the crime of two or three morons," charity worker Marion Beauchamp said.

One protester called Trump's moves such as his support for overturning the Affordable Care Act and his order banning refugees a "crazy extremism".

"All these issues dispute our way of living, our freedom, our openness, that is really scary," said Martine Froidefond, who heads a social development charity.

On Saturday the US government said citizens of the seven countries could resume boarding US-bound flights after a Seattle judge blocked Trump's executive order.

Trump responded on Twitter saying "the opinion of this so-called judge...is ridiculous and will be overturned."

"So it's important for people to realize that right now, they need to either choose, and this goes for the companies as well - will they follow Trump's orders, or the judge's orders in the United States? Will companies like Air France comply with the judge's orders, so that people can get home? Will airports in Paris comply with the judge's orders so people can get home, so workers can get home?," asked another American lawyer, Robert Powel.

Saturday's protest against Trump followed a demonstration in Paris on January 21, that coincided with the women's march in Washington D.C. That solidarity march also drew thousands of people.

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