On Friday, the Drôme prefecture decided to ban two demonstrations in Valence, scheduled for Saturday, in connection with Thomas' death. According to the prefecture, the first, which was planned to run between the prefecture and the Palais de Justice, was "widely relayed by ultra-right networks, suggesting, through the presence of individuals wishing to renew aggressive actions and demonstrations of force, tensions similar to those that took place on November 25 and 26."
The second, which was planned to run from Valencia to Crépol, "is clearly part of a reaction to the mobilization of ultra-right movements that foreshadows ideological clashes," the prefecture explained, adding that their "concomitance is likely to cause significant disturbances to public order."
Hence these prohibitions. "I am absolutely not on the political ground but on the ground of the security of our citizens," recalled the prefect of the Drôme on France info this Saturday morning. "My decisions are motivated by the risk of disturbing public order."
An undeclared gathering banned in Romans-sur-Isère
Regarding Romans-sur-Isère, where a "call for a rally is circulating on social networks", "I considered that the risk of disturbing public order was too great", added Thierry Devimeux, who "recalls that this gathering, which has not been declared, has indeed been banned".
#CommuniquédePresse | 💬 Thierry Devimeux, prefect of the #Drôme, condemns the death threats against Marie-Hélène Thoraval
➡ Mayors and our local elected representatives are the first links in the republican chain, they embody the general interest on a daily basis and in this they are the only ones who want to be able to... pic.twitter.com/jS9j02xqTF
— Prefect of Drôme 🇫🇷🇪🇺 (@Prefet26) December 1, 2023
"We are in a department that is still very emotional," he adds. "Based on the desire to support Thomas' family, in fact behind it there are ultra-right or ultra-left movements and I considered that there was a real risk of disturbing public order." The prefect evokes, "activists who call to gather in Valence, but make national calls with probably people who would have desires to come from several regions of France".
In addition, according to the prefecture, these possible disturbances to public order during this period of preparation for the end-of-year celebrations, when city centers that experience a high number of visitors, increase the risks for the inhabitants. "The security forces are fully mobilized to preserve the security of the population and measures are being taken to guarantee public order," said the prefecture, which called for calm and appeasement.