Olivier Beziade suffered a “very serious brain injury” after being shot from behind by a police officer using a flash ball gun during the yellow vest demonstration in Bordeaux on Saturday. The father-of-three is currently in an induced coma in hospital, according to his family. A shocking video shows blood pouring from Mr Beziade’s head as he is treated by paramedics.
Mr Beziade’s wife Cindy told French media: “I’m furious. This is unacceptable. I won’t let it go. The pictures speak for themselves.
“The demonstration was calm until about 4.30pm. I was with my husband in Rue Sainte-Catherine.
“Then there was a bit of panic. We turned turned back to avoid teargas fumes and to go home. I turned first right, he took the first turning on the left.”
Mr Beziade was then shot by an officer with a flash ball gun, while another threw a stun grenade towards him.
Mrs Beziade added: “They shot at us like rabbits.”
Local police have ordered an investigation, claiming a group of yellow vests protesters were “trying to get into an Apple store nearby” at the time of the incident.
This weekend marked the ninth week of yellow vest protests – named after the high-visibility jackets they wear – which have rocked French President Emmanuel Macron’s premiership.
There were 32,000 demonstrators across the country on Saturday, including 8,000 in Paris, according to official estimates.
The unrest was sparked in November by fuel tax reforms but it has developed into a broader movement against Mr Macron.
The sometimes-violent protests have continued despite a series of humiliating climbdowns by Mr Macron in a desperate bid to regain control.
And the grassroots movement has even inspired copycat protests across Europe.
The French President – who was elected in May 2017 on a promise to reshape the economy – has launched a three-month national debate in an attempt to quell the riots.
Mr Macron said proposals made during the debate would help build a new “contract for the nation”.
However, a tenth weekend of protests are set to go ahead despite Mr Macron’s best efforts to get a grip on the unrest.
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