Retired French general, Christian Piquemal, 75, who commanded the Foreign Legion and was advisor to 3 French presidents was arrested at a large anti-Islam protest in Calais which he joined ‘to prevent the decline of my country from rapidly expanding Islamization.” The French government accused the demonstrators of being “neo-Nazis.”
RT The arrest at the unsanctioned PEGIDA rally in Calais on Saturday was one of 20, and came as clashes erupted between the ‘anti-Islamization’ group and the police in the French port city. The 75-year-old general is considered to have played “the main role” in the protest.
Piquemal was charged with “participation in an unlawful assembly which did not dissolve after warning.” Four people in his entourage were also charged with possession of weapons, including a knuckle-duster and a Taser gun.
Yvan Blot, a French politician and friend of the general, told RT that the authorities had made a “big mistake” by arresting Piquemal. He suggested that it would have been correct to invite the general to the local prefecture to discuss the problem, rather than detain him and other protesters.
Nicolas Dhuicq, a member of the National Assembly of France, agreed, saying that the government should have resolved the issue in a “more honorable manner.”
Jean du Verdier, a French army general, told RT that he believes Piquemal will become a flag bearer.
“I admire General Piquemal, who had the courage to participate in a public demonstration at his age. Just like him, I’m totally shocked by what is happening in Calais,” he said. “Calais has been an ulcer for several years, which the local governor is not capable of resolving. This is scandalous.”
“What has shocked me the most was to see General Piquemal, who commanded the Foreign Legion, to be taken into custody by some young law enforcers and treated like a criminal. General Piquemal will become a flag bearer, a symbol of all the people who resist against the paralysis of the public power. I think that, in the end, they have done him a favor. He’ll be remembered for years.”