The European flag, on January 1, 2022, under the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, to celebrate the start of the French presidency of the EU. Alain JOCARD
The rebellious presidential candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon on Monday mocked on France Inter the “communicative caprice” of Emmanuel Macron that he said was the installation of a European flag under the Arc de Triomphe, which triggered a controversy especially on the right.
This flag, set up to celebrate the start of the French presidency of the European Union on Saturday, was withdrawn Sunday morning, “as planned” assured the Elysee, also recalling that dozens of monuments were lit in blue during one week.
“Me too”, replied Jean-Luc Mélenchon, questioned on the fact that Valérie Pécresse (LR) and Marine Le Pen (RN) had been shocked by the presence of the European flag on the tomb of the unknown soldier.
The LFI candidate cited the “protocol” proposed by Nicolas Sarkozy to have the Lisbon Treaty adopted by parliament in 2007, stipulating that “neither the (European) hymn nor the flag would be recognized as such by France”.
“President Macron decided on his own and without asking anything from anyone”, criticized Mr. Mélenchon. He also argued: “There is still a decree which prohibits flags without the national colors.”
His competitor on the left, the communist Fabien Roussel also, on Europe 1 Monday, found “unwelcome, regrettable that the French government, the President of the Republic, have chosen to erase, withdraw, the French flag under the Arc de Triomphe, symbol of the nation, of these women and men who fought for France “.
They had “the European flag installed instead, which is for many, at least for me – I have experienced it in my region – synonymous with relocations, deindustrialisation (…), also synonymous with loss of sovereignty”, he added.
Several environmentalists and socialists have, on social networks during the weekend, defended this use of the European flag, believing that it also symbolized the peace obtained in Europe thanks to the EU.