Greta Thunberg joins banned French protest

Climate activist Greta Thunberg joined a banned protest on Saturday on highways in southern France, where police used tear gas and made arrests a day earlier.
A global figure in the fight against climate change, Thunberg was fined by a Swedish court over her protests for direct action there. Wearing a Palestinian scarf and anorak, Thunberg joined other protesters in the pouring rain at the site in Sykes, where a new A69 motorway is planned to link the southwestern city of Toulouse with the city of Castres. They held up banners with the words "Stop A69". Critics of the project say it is harmful to the environment and does not take into account the current climate crisis. The organizers of the protest continued the rally, even though the authorities banned the gathering due to "risks of serious damage to public order".
AFP journalists saw at least two arrests and the use of tear gas by police at the scene on Friday. Activists had set up camp toilets and signposts on private land where they planned to create a so-called "protection zone". Police cleared pallets and wheelbarrows used to block a small road running past the field, which is close to the route of the planned motorway. A police source told AFP they expected up to 200 people to attend the protest, while organizers estimated between 500 and 1,000. Environmentalists have protested several times in recent months along the planned route of the A69. /BGNES, AFP