People who support vaccinations against Covid-19 called for a demonstration in Lyon on Monday, as protests against the inoculation and anti-coronavirus regulations continue in France.
The supporters are seeking to show that antivaxxers are a minority, co-organizer Jacques Boucaud told broadcaster France Info.
“We decided to make our voices heard and show that we are willing to be vaccinated.”
He said a large part of the population were eager to leave behind them the restrictions that have defined the past year and a half. “We know from statements by scientists and experts that vaccinations are the only way out of this pandemic.”
Boucaud said he was appalled by the divisions in the country arising from controversy over the vaccine and talk of “resistance” and “dictatorship.”
He said such words were more suited to the situation in Afghanistan, referring to the recent takeover by the Taliban.
Demonstration organizers’ speak instead of “civil brotherhood, all inoculated for more shared freedom.”
On Saturday, tens of thousands of people demonstrated anew against tougher regulations introduced by the government to prevent the spread of the virus.
Around 160,000 people took part in 200 demonstrations nationwide, the Interior Ministry said. Last week, similar protests drew 175,000 participants, with 215,000 turning out the week before.
In addition to compulsory vaccinations for health workers, the protests were directed against the so-called health passport to prove vaccination, recovery from Covid-19 or a negative coronavirus test.
The health passport, which can be stored in the nationwide coronavirus app, has been required for the past three weeks for various everyday activities: to visit cafes and restaurants; before entering large shopping centres; and when travelling by long-distance train or plane, among other things.