Eight people have been arrested in France for attacking the first lady’s cousin, Brigitte Macron, after President Emmanuel Macron’s televised address.
Jean-Baptiste Tronjot was beaten by a group of demonstrators at anti-government protests in the city of Amiens in northern France.
He was hit in the head, arms and legs and is awaiting the results of scans to determine the extent of his injuries.
Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, said the attack was an “unacceptable act” and added that “violence has no place in a democracy.”
Tronjo was attacked in front of the family’s chocolate shop in Amiens, which has been the target of protesters several times in the past.
Local police said they arrested eight people after the attack.
The assailants fled the scene after the neighbors intervened.
Brigitte Macron said she fully sympathized with her family members and condemned “cowardice, stupidity and violence”.
“I have condemned violence several times, it can only make things worse,” Macron said.
The father of the beaten Jean-Baptiste, Jean-Alexandre Trogno, told French media that the attackers “crossed all boundaries” and insulted “the president, his wife and their family.”
“I am stunned,” added the father of the beaten man.
Eric Ciotti, chairman of the Republican Party, condemned the attack and demanded that the attackers be punished.
“Yes to democratic discussion, no to violence and terror,” he wrote on Twitter.
Brigitte Macron’s family has been running a chocolate shop in Amiens for six generations.
Her specialty is macaroons from Amiens, a delicacy whose main ingredient is almonds.
The family business, which has stores across northern France, has been repeatedly targeted by protesters since Macron became president.
The president and the first lady of France have been the target of accusations that they have financial interests in the company, which they both denied.
Jean-Alexandre Tronjot told the local newspaper Courier Picard that he did not understand why the family business was attacked by protesters.
“Emmanuel Macron has nothing to do with our business. I don’t understand all these people who keep harassing us.
“Some of them even call for a boycott of our stores and products,” he said.
Macron has faced large demonstrations across the country over a pension reform that saw the retirement age raised from 62 to 64.
Demonstrators set fire to Macron’s favorite restaurant in Paris during one of the protests, and the local offices of political parties are also regularly targeted.
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Source: Dnevni list Danas by www.danas.rs.
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