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"What do you want to show by breaking?" : the rant of Nantes merchants who are victims of thugs


REPORT - Drop in attendance, windows to be rebuilt ... in Nantes, professionals in the city center are helpless in the face of the excesses that have occurred in recent days on the sidelines of the demonstrations against the pension reform.

Le Figaro Nantes

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In his shop in downtown Nantes, in the middle of his ski jackets and pants that he hopes to sell despite the drop in attendance, Arnaud D. can no longer take it.

Located in the Bouffay district, a little away from the usual route of the demonstrations, it is not spared.

Thursday, when the violence reached an unprecedented level in the city of the Dukes, the manager of The North Face was himself taken to task.

While he was putting up a poster intended to support shopkeepers and beg thugs to "

let them work

", his shop window was photographed by a black bloc.

His look said it all.

That won't make him give in.

He also calls on traders to affix it to their storefronts.

"We have to wake up.

Are we going to let ourselves be walked on?”

he told a friend two days ago, thinking about solutions.

“Come see us instead of being at a distance and throwing cobblestones.

What do you want to show by breaking?»

, wonders the boss of five employees who recalls that 60% of traders earn less than 1500 euros per month:

"if we call that privileged ... Go do c **** elsewhere."

Read alsoRetreats: from the Grands Boulevards to the Opera, the destructive march of the thugs in the heart of Paris

Drop in attendance

In his neighborhood, the city sends back a sad image.

This Friday morning, burnt waste is piled up on the road, tags "

Mort aux Bourges

", "


" ("All cops are bastards", or "All the cops are bastards" in French), "

war on capital

» cover facades and wooden panels still protect some shops.

"The clientele is declining

," says a neighboring business.

“We relive what we experienced with the


laments another who wishes to remain anonymous for fear of reprisals.

“How is your morale?”

asks, a few meters further Arnaud D. to Vanessa Nauleau.

“Moral at half mast

,” replies the employee of the Pillory pharmacy.

“Yesterday it burned my nose all day.

The last time, the flames almost reached the pharmacy and one of my colleagues was crying

,” she continues.

“We are very annoyed by the inefficiency of politicians and prefects”

, continues the manager of the pharmacy Pierre Coulon, who observes a 20% drop in attendance.

In addition to the violence that scares away passers-by, transport strikes make it difficult to access the city center.

Read alsoNantes: the sale postponed due to the garbage collectors' strike and the social context

Windows to be repaired

Course of the fifty hostages, near the crossroads of the trams, regularly the scene of tensions during the mobilizations, Babak Nikbakht keeps smiling.

He might have lost it.

On Tuesday evening, his Or en cash shop was ransacked by thugs who threw a wrought iron city stud on it.

A screen was torn off, armchairs were damaged, a fire was smoldering... Three days later, in addition to the wooden panels that protect his business and a message informing that "the agency is open despite the

device protection

", everything is back to normal.

But he got 500 euros worth of repairs (he fixed everything himself).

We are not in a dictatorship.

It hurts me knowing that people are beheaded for less elsewhere

Babak Nikbakht, Iranian manager of the Or en cash store

“My heart is on the left.

I understand that violence can show people's anger but I don't understand the desire to set fires.

I don't feel like a representative of capitalism.

The people who come to see me sell jewelry to meet their difficult end of the month


Besides, the gold is not stored here.

If he feels deprived and thinks that the perpetrators have acted with "


", he, the Iranian without history, is sometimes shocked by what he sees or hears.

“We are not in a dictatorship.

It hurts me knowing that people are beheaded for less than that elsewhere”


On the same road, the Orange store was also targeted on Tuesday evening, forcing it to close for two days.

The sign had to reorganize and send its employees to other stores while repairing.

The Gold shop in cash degraded Tuesday evening.

LT / Le Figaro

Babak Nikbakht, Friday March 24, in front of his shop repaired after the damage suffered three days earlier.

LT / Le Figaro

At SFR, the six employees shocked by the scenes of looting and vandalism that occurred on Thursday will be on technical unemployment for several days.

The manager of the franchised brand has indicated that he has €150,000 worth of repairs and a minimum of 15 days of closure.

It is in front of this same store, symbol of a very worrying degree of violence, that three representatives of the trade, catering and hotel sectors met this Friday to sound the alarm.


Yesterday was a nightmarish day, it's unheard of

," begins Teddy Robert, president of Plein Center, the association of merchants and craftsmen in downtown Nantes.

The course was passed on Tuesday evening when servers were targeted in the streets while they were doing their service

,” he says, welcoming the work of the inter-union and differentiating the thugs from the demonstrators.

We are dying

,” adds Olivier Dardé, president of UMIH 44 (Union of trades and industries of the hotel industry) which notes a hotel occupancy rate divided by half.

However, with the increase in charges, the price of raw materials, professionals are already suffering and will not be able to stem a new crisis.

They also fear that internet players will eat away at market share, at their expense.

It is moreover in this context that the group of elected representatives of the municipal opposition "Better Living in Nantes" proposes to organize days "Achetons Nantais" in the spring.

If this continues, we will die

”, summarizes Olivia Delezinier of the GNI (National Group of Independents) and restaurateur.

Thursday, the one who absolutely does not question the right to demonstrate - quite the contrary - received eleven customers against a hundred normally.

This decrease in attendance is felt even at the other end of Nantes, far from the city center, at the Little Atlantique Brewery, where half of the regulars have not come there for lunch since the start of the week.

With the approach of a new day of demonstrations on March 28, Nantes entrepreneurs need to be reassured.

Olivia Delezinier, representative of the GNI, Teddy Robert, president of Plein Center, Olivier Dardé, president of UMIH 44. LT / Le Figaro

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-03-24

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