French President Emmanuel Macron Gets Slapped By a Man

French President Emmanuel Macron Gets Slapped By a Man

French President Emmanuel Macron received an unpleasant welcome during a tour of a village in the department of Drome, southeastern France on Tuesday, when an unidentified man slapped him in the face as he approached local residents to shake hands. The presidential guard quickly move in and take hold of the assailant.

Prime Minister Jean Castex called for a "Republican awakening, adding: "Democracy is debate, dialogue, expressing legitimate disagreements, but it can not in any way be violence, verbal aggression or physical aggression".

'Mr Macron appeared very relaxed and thought he was getting a good reception from those watching him, ' said an eye-witness. There, a man yelled "à bas la Macronie", or "down with Macronia", and slapped him in the face. The man was swiftly swarmed by security.

"A man attempted to hit the president".

French media later described the attacker as an "anarchist".

A few minutes before the attack, Macron had launched an appeal for "peace across France", and called for people to "respect one another".

"The benefit of all this is that it puts an end to violent and hatred".

While slapping the president, he could be heard shouting "Montjoie Saint Denis", which was the battle cry of the French armies when the country was still a monarchy.

Xavier Bertrand, a member of the centre-right Les Repupicains, also commented on the attack saying, "No political disagreement will ever justify violence. It is unacceptable to attack politicians but even more so the President of the Republic because he is the President of the Republic".

In 2016 - before he became President a year later - Mr Macron was pelted with eggs by Communist Party members outside a post office in the Paris suburb of Montreuil.

He is widely expected to run for re-election in France's presidential elections in 2021.

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