Progress, 23.10.2010 - Lyon still bathed in a surreal atmosphere throughout the day yesterday. To the sound of sirens, screams of the crowd. To the rythm of police vans, the running of disparate groups dispersed across the centre, many around Place Bellecour. All under the hum of the helicopter installed in the Lyon sky like an ominous bird. Just follow its flight to understand where the problems are. Yesterday, concerns took a new turn. A bad turn, with a nauseating stench. Groups, crystallized into two blocs sought confrontation.
On the one hand, an assembly of young people who seem clearly anchored on the side of the far right. Without openly claiming it. "Our city is not there to be dismantled, we belong to the people of Lyon, we do not want thugs (casseurs)," said a young man, black scarf around his neck, equipped with padded gloves. Displayed no movement, but a dull will to fight. This block had a rendezvous mid-afternoon, at quai Rambaud, on the banks of the Saone. Approximately 140 young people, immediately surrounded for an identity check. Without prior notification, without authorization, they incur a "crime of unlawful assembly." They have been warned. This does not deter them from moving towards Place Bellecour. There, another camp, about two hundred people, have filled the square. It mixes the youth of the estates, children of immigrants and anarchist activists. For the police, the strategy is to contain these groups, isolate, separate them, to avoid potentially worrisome clashes.
This ceaseless game of cat and mouse causes a striking scene, around 17 hours. This is not place Bellecour, nor Guillotière Bridge. This time, instead in place Ampere in the Ainay district, which is completely cut off from the world, surrounded by tight police cordon. In the middle, about 150 young people waving a tricolor [French] flag, chanting slogans of a somewhat equivocal tendency. Style: "Scum, you're fucked, the people of Lyon are in the street." Or again, in an allusion diverted from the founder of SOS Racism slogan: "Don't touch my city." Some songs are accompanied by gestures similar to those of football fans. In Rue Victor-Hugo a window openscurtains drawn, a man brandishing a Lyonnais flag shouts: "Go home." All around the square, small groups rotate, appear to be seeking trouble, reply:" This is our home". The two sides shout at each other, provoke each other.
Fascists against anarchists: this is not the traditional folklore of the campus. Groups are giving a new dimension to the social crisis, seeking a fight, against a backdrop of conflicting ideologies that are not really declared. And with new guests, young people from the banlieux without political affiliation. A worrying cocktail. Four brass knuckles, a knife, a screwdriver, were discovered in a sewer near the site Ampere.
In the afternoon, eight youths armed with iron bars, considered as "anarcho-libertarian" by the police, were arrested around Perrache. By early evening, suspected young rightist extremists leave Square Ampere, in buses. Direction, Central Police station. Reason: unlawful assembly. Bloc against bloc, the war did not occur. Police and gendarmes, exhausted by a week of tensions, played peacekeepers.