France: Students demonstrate in Paris

Some 3000 school and university students marched through the streets of Paris today to show their continuing opposition to the LRU

The march began at the PRG campus (Paris VII) on the South side of the Seine, the march then made its way past the gare d'Austerlitz and finally ended at the place de la Bastille where Police blocked off the exits.

The marchers blocked the road as they marched although police had already sealed off side roads with Gendarmes in full riot gear with tear gas grenade launchers displayed prominently. The exception was the block from Nanterre, some 100 students went to the gare de Lyon after the strike committee meeting on campus and took to the streets to meet up with the main body of the march blocking roads as they went. When the rest of the marchers saw the Nanterre block a massive cheer went up.

Tolbiac University also had a large group of marchers behind a banner. There were some students from Paris VIII with a red flag, but not marching as a block.

The marchers rapidly began to mingle with each other sharing jokes stories and chanting. One of the favourite chants was "Pécresse eh ah on fait sauter ta loi" Pécresse we'll get rid of your law, sauter can also mean to jump or to blow up. There were about 30 students from the STAPS department (sports studies) at Nanterre many of whom had stenciled t-shirts for the march.

Marne la Vallée, a university not known for militancy, began a blockade today after students voted for a blockade and strikes yesterday.