Opinion poll shows support waning for French 'yellow vest' rallies

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An opinion survey published this week has found a majority of those questioned wish an end to the rolling 'yellow vest' street protests centred on falling standards of living for low-and middle-income earners, although most still continue to sympathise with the demands of the movement.

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More than half of France's population want the "gilets jaunes" (yellow vests) anti-government protests to stop, with two out of three people no longer believing the demonstrations reflect the group's initial demands, according to a latest opinion poll, reports Euronews.

It is the first survey to suggest the majority of French people have turned against the movement.

Protesters have been taking to the streets every weekend since mid-November, with rallies marked by clashes between demonstrators and police that have led to injuries and famous monuments being destroyed.

The survey, carried out by pollster Elabe for BFMTV, said 56% of those questioned think the movement should stop mobilising people to take to the streets, an increase of 11 percentage points since December.

The majority of French people surveyed (58%) still support or sympathise with the "gilets jaunes" but that number has dropped five percentage points in the last month.

"This is indeed a major reversal", the head of Elabe, Bernard Sananès, told the French news channel BFMTV.

"support for the mobilisation was at 70% at one point, between December and January it was already more than 55, and now there is this switch", he added.

One of the main reasons for the shift in opinion could be because 64% said the protests no longer reflected the movement's initial demands.

Though the protests continue every weekend, the number of demonstrators taking part has dwindled since they began almost three months ago.

See more of this report, with video, from Euronews.

 

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