Sun May 26, 2002
PARIS - Thousands of people marched through central Paris on Sunday to protest U.S. President George W. Bush's two-day visit to France and to denounce American domestic and foreign policy. Marchers shouted "Bush, you are the terrorist" as they walked from the landmark Place de la Republique to the Bastille. Several dozen death penalty opponents gathered near a replica of the Statue of Liberty in Paris to denounce Bush's support for capital punishment. The statue is located near a bridge were death-penalty opponents hung 152 cardboard figures that dangled from string to denote each person executed in Texas during Bush's nearly six years there as governor. Michel Taube, head of France's "Together Against the Death Penalty" Association, said the grim display was a message to "tell the United States to abolish the death penalty, as European countries have done."
Pacifists, Leftist organizations, Ecologists and pro-Palestinian groups were involved in Sunday's demonstration in Paris, where Bush met with French President Jacques Chirac at the presidential palace. French farmer Jose Bove, who shot to fame as an anti-globalization activist after wrecking a McDonald's restaurant in southern France to show his opposition to fast food, accused Bush of pursuing a policy that led to U.S. domination of the world.
Several protesters hoisted a large picture of a pretzel, with a sign that said "Watch out, Bush!"
Others taking part in protests include Attac, a Paris-based anti-globalization organization that helped organize mass protests at the Genoa G-8 meeting in July 2001; and environmental groups, which have sharply criticized Bush for rejecting the Kyoto Protocol that sets limits on greenhouse gas emissions responsible for global warming.