Sumary of France launches controversial vaccine pass as fourth wave hits:
- The so-called “health pass” is required for all events or places with more than 50 people before being extended to restaurants, cafes and shopping centres in August.
- Prime Minister Jean Castex defended the policy, noting that nearly all new infections are in people who have not been immunised.
- “We’re in the fourth wave,” Castex told TF1 television, adding that the goal of the health pass is to avoid a fourth nationwide lockdown.
- Health Minister Olivier Veran lashed out at vaccine refuseniks, who have accused the government of flouting their freedom of choice.
- – ‘Fracture our country’ – Tens of thousands of vaccine sceptics took to the streets in protest over the new vaccine rules last week, accusing President Emmanuel Macron of running a vaccine “dictatorship”.
- The restrictions have even faced criticism from some lawmakers in Macron’s Republic on the Move (LREM) party, who see it as a threat to civil liberties.
- “Protecting public health has been our priority since March 2020, but it has not threatened the cohesion of our country because the rules were the same for everyone,” LREM lawmaker Pacome Rupin said on Tuesday.
- “The health pass is going to fracture our country,” he said.