NDDL: the situation remains stuck after more than a week of operations

On the eighth day of gendarmerie operations on the ZAD Notre-Dame-des-Landes, the situation remains blocked Monday, the police clearing barricades immediately rebuilt by the zadistes and their supporters.

After a calm night, and the televised speech of the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron Sunday evening that recalled that "the republican order must be respected" on the ZAD, the gendarmes have recovered Monday morning, as every day, to clear the barricades installed in the night by the zadistes on the D81. Immediately the gendarmes left, the barricades had gone up again.

Pomegranate shots were still resounding on Monday, notably at "Gourbi", an emblematic place of life of the ZAD, destroyed last week, where the zadistes managed to transport a frame in the night.

About fifty of them protected this frame Monday morning, before being evacuated by the gendarmes who were busy in the middle of the morning to destroy it by sawing it in pieces. Then the zadistes returned from the gendarmes to rebuild the structure, before walking again in the afternoon on the ZAD.

"The destruction of this meeting place that the Gourbi is obviously that it reinforces us ", observes" Camille ", pseudo generic zadistes, a black scarf on the neck and ski goggles on the head.

Reinforcements come even from abroad, according to another" Camille ", anarchist of 54 years old. "There are Englishmen, Italians, Irish, Spaniards," she enumerates, rejoicing at this "big solidarity" and this "cohesion" recreated.

Trenches and barricades continued to be installed Monday afternoon. "They are barricades of defense to defend the places of life since Thursday the evacuations are stopped but it fart of everywhere.Even a symbolic construction as the Gourbi they destroyed it", estimates Claudine, 68 years old, occupying the camping of "White hair"

But some opponents reported their weariness in this state of siege. "I am revolted but the barricades it is not my conflict with me (…) I have the feeling that it is necessary to leave", estimates thus Julien, a inhabitant of the ZAD.

"D ' Firstly, because locals need access to their fields, it's no longer an occupation, it's a state of siege, because of the barricades, they make kilometers in the fields, "he says, preferring instead to enter into negotiations with the prefecture to "impose something".

An end of the clashes notably demanded by the Acipa, historical association, to restore the dialogue.

– "disorder" –

"You have people who come back and have nothing to do with the conflict but who just want the disorder, "denounced Sunday evening Emmanuel Macron.

Sunday the supporters of the zadistes had repeatedly attacked the positions of the gendarmes to large Molotov cocktail reinforcement, rockets and homemade bombs filled with steel balls.

Violent urts, on the sidelines of a peaceful rally of support for expelled from the ZAD which gathered Sunday several thousand people, made seven wounded side gendarmes.

Eight protesters were arrested Sunday, according to the prefecture of Loire-Atlantique .

An investigation of flagrance for aggravated violence was entrusted to the research section of Angers after a homemade bomb containing steel balls that wounded three gendarmes Sunday morning.

More than sixty gendarmes were wounded in a week, according to Emmanuel Macron. "This is unacceptable," he lamented.

The expulsion of illegal occupants from the ZAD, which mobilizes 2,500 gendarmes, began on Monday, April 9, and in three days 29 squats, on which were sometimes several buildings, were destroyed.

now focuses on the free movement of roads, the clearing of squats and the maintenance of order. But the Zadists called their reinforcements more and more on the spot, including "blacks blocks", to try to reinvest the destroyed sites.

The President of the Republic assured Sunday that "everything that will have to be evacuated will be "after the new period of regularization (23 April) left to the illegal occupants to regularize their situation.

In Saint-Barth, tourism leaves but housing remains in crisis

Six months after hurricane Irma, tourism is gradually returning to the island of Saint-Barthélemy. But the housing crisis persists and the lives of the inhabitants remain very complicated.

All the visitors who set foot in St. Barthelemy are surprised by the beautiful appearance of the port of Gustavia and the surroundings of the airport. However, by pushing the walk in some neighborhoods, the stigmata of Irma are present. Torn roofs, rickety houses whose only walls remain …

In the Saline district, there are several hundred tons of waste to be evacuated. This single budget item has already cost 7 million euros to the Collectivité of Saint-Barthélemy, and it is not finished. At the center of cleanliness, the teams are overwhelmed.

Same observation on the side of the artisans, too few to answer all the requests for reconstruction. They work hard, construction site in a general desire on the island to rebuild as quickly as possible.

"We are overwhelmed with calls, quotes, we all postponed our holidays and we works six days a week, "says a refrigeration specialist. However, they are hampered by another problem: the transport of materials, which works in slow motion.

In Saint-Barthélemy, where Johnny Hallyday was buried at the end of 2017, the tiny commercial port can not handle all the containers that arrive. It was necessary to make up for the delays related to Irma, to manage the influx of goods. The swell of the hurricane has moved the seabed, and several cubic meters of sand in the channel have created a shoal that prevents some cargo ships from approaching with their full load capacity. Thus, for building materials, such as car repair parts, not forgetting the supply of stores, the whole island is waiting for its parcels.

– And soon the hurricane season …-

Between homes still stricken and the workforce that companies bring, St. Barthelemy is experiencing a severe housing crisis. The rental market, already very tense, has become a battlefield. Entrepreneurs drive up rent prices, conflicts between landlords and tenants explode

"If I do not find in July, I'll have to leave," worries Sophie. In one month's search, she did not visit any homes, received any calls, found no leads. "My life is here, I live there for seven years …" On an island where the price of a rent is about 2,500 euros per month for a 2-3 rooms, many residents have thrown in the towel and left, including families.

In parallel, the tourism professionals s 'activate to bring visitors, without whom the economy of the entire island is threatened. Thus, the port, the airport, the beaches and Gustavia, the capital district of Saint-Barth, have regained their cachet. The Bucket Regatta, a luxury nautical event held in mid-March, saw the return of dozens of wealthy Americans to the island. Not enough, however, for shops and restaurants

The hurricane season, which begins in two months, haunts the spirits. The Irma trauma is still very present. The Community and EDF are working on a tight program of work to bury the maximum of networks, as soon as possible. Those whose homes are damaged are anxious about not being able to repair in time.

The equestrian center, which lost several horses in the hurricane, is looking for a safe place for its surviving equines, and is trying to repatriate the maximum of animals towards the metropolis. At the beginning of March, a general cut in the telephone and internet network brought the inhabitants six months back, in the aftermath of Irma. "Some residents have panicked," says a social worker. "There, if we take a level 2 cyclone, it's going to be very hard."

In Portsall, the drama of the Amoco remains anchored in the minds

"As soon as I was awake, I smelled the oil," recalls the former farmer from Portsall, a small fishing port in North Finistere in front of which the Amoco Cadiz ran aground on March 16, 1978. Forty years later, the drama remains in the minds.

"Like many others, I was to see if my boiler was not burst", says Jean-Yves Pellen, 30 years old at the time of the sinking of the giant tanker, causing one of the worst oil spills in history.

The man was mobilized from the first hours of the disaster, before being joined by 35,000 soldiers and thousands of volunteers from all over the country. For three days, he relentlessly pumped the oil using his slurry tanker.

 Jean-Yves Pellen, farmer, February 22, 2018 in Ploudalmezeau, Finistere (AFP - Fred TANNEAU)

Jean-Yves Pellen, farmer, February 22, 2018 in Ploudalmezeau, Finistere (AFP – Fred TANNEAU)

"Only slurry tankers can do this job," he says. "If there were not the farmers, I do not know how we would have done, frankly, it's not to boast but without them it would have been hard, hard … There was when even oil! "

Burdened with 227,000 tons of crude, the Amoco Cadiz ran aground on the evening of March 16, 1978, less than two kilometers from the small postcard port, throwing into the sea for two long weeks the raw locked in his tanks. The pollution will spread over 360 km of one of the most preserved coast of Europe.

 Jean Lescop on the beach of Ploudalmezeau, February 22, 2018 in Finistere (AFP - Fred TANNEAU)

Jean Lescop on the beach of Ploudalmezeau, February 22, 2018 in Finistere (AFP – Fred TANNEAU)

"All the beaches, all the ports, the abers, all that it was very dark", remembers Jean Lescop, an old of the merchant marine. "There was everywhere," said the 69-year-old man, who was busy renovating a former SNSM (National Society for Rescue at Sea) canoe on the Portsall docks.

– A sticky and silent swell

Not far from the shelter where is stored the historic listed boat, facing the sea, sits the monumental anchor of Amoco Cadiz, now only visible trace of the disaster.

The waves "were struggling to break," recalls Jean Lescop, evoking a sticky and silent swell. Like many others, in the hours that followed the tragedy, he cleaned the rocks and the dirty beaches, "with the spoon", assures it, so the means were missing at the beginning, in spite of the good will of all, from the oldest to the youngest.

 Jean-Yves Letard, restaurateur, poses in front of photos of the sinking of the Amoco Cadiz in his restaurant Beg Ar Mor, on February 26, 2018 in Portsall, Finistère (AFP - Fred TANNEAU)

Jean-Yves Letard, restorer, poses in front of photos of the sinking of Amoco Cadiz in his restaurant Beg Ar Mor, on February 26, 2018 in Portsall, in Finistère (AFP – Fred TANNEAU) [19659006] Jean-Yves Letard, restaurateur for 32 years in the commune, was 13 years old at the time of the disaster: "We were going to recover the birds to send them to the clinics in order to try to save them".

"We went by bike, we went three kilometers, we came back, we caught birds, we were being bawled by our parents because we were full of oil," he continues, in front of one of the walls of the room of his restaurant lined with photographs of the tanker half sunk in the water first, then lying by 30 meters of bottom.

This solidarity will also be illustrated in the judicial fight led by the Breton representatives, led by the late senator-mayor of Ploudalmézeau, Alphone Arzel: in September 1978, 90 municipalities of Finistère and Côtes-d'Armor gather to attack in Chicago, the Standard Oil Of Indiana, world oil giant and owner of the Amoco.

'Someone will pay'

 The anchor of the Amoco Cadiz in the port of Portsall, Finistere, February 22, 2018 (AFP - Fred TANNEAU)

The anchor of the Amoco Cadiz in the port of Portsall, in Finistère, February 22, 2018 (AFP – Fred TANNEAU)

"I still remember Alphonse Arzel arriving at the town hall after spending the night on the dune, pipe in mouth", says Marguerite Lamour, 22 years old at the time of the drama and current mayor of Ploudalmézeau.

"+ Someone will pay +, that's what he said," she told AFP, referring to the man who incarnated for 14 years the fight of the Bretons across the Atlantic. "He did not know who, he did not know how, but he was already determined," continues the then secretary of the town hall Ploudalmézeau.

And perseverance will eventually pay: the American company is recognized as sole responsible for the catastrophe and must pay the equivalent of 35 million euros to Breton municipalities and 160 million to the French State.

Deal on US Immigration Reform Remains Elusive

With three days to go before U.S. government funding runs out yet again, the path to an immigration deal remained murky on Monday, with President Donald Trump rejecting core elements of a bipartisan proposal put forward in the Senate.

“Any deal on DACA that does not include STRONG border security and the desperately needed WALL is a total waste of time,” Trump tweeted, restating some of his demands for approving a path to citizenship for hundreds of thousands of young undocumented immigrants brought to America as children.

“We’re building the wall. Believe me, we’re building the wall,” the president later emphasized during a speech in Ohio. “The ones that don’t want security at the southern border or any other border are the Democrats.”

Trump spoke out as Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona and Democratic Senator Chris Coons of Delaware unveiled a proposal granting legal status to recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, an Obama administration program Trump set for expiration next month.

The bipartisan bill seeks to boost border security but would mandate a study to determine the most effective means to do so — neither ruling out a border wall nor providing immediate funding for one, as Trump has demanded. Setting a goal of attaining “operational control” of U.S. borders by 2020, the proposed legislation mirrors a House bill that has dozens of co-sponsors of both political parties.

Immigrant rights groups praised the proposal for its limited scope, saying a bill that focuses on DACA and border security has a better chance of passing in Congress than comprehensive legislation addressing both legal and illegal immigration.

“Narrow gets it done. A radical and massive overhaul does not,” said Frank Sharry of Washington-based America’s Voice, which urges a swift path to citizenship for the nation’s estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants.

In his tweet, Trump noted that March 5, when DACA recipients lose protections from deportation, “is rapidly approaching.” He said Democrats “seem not to care about DACA. Make a deal!”

For their part, Democratic leaders signaled a growing resistance to key planks of the White House’s blueprint for immigration, including a reduction in legal immigration and prioritizing newcomers with advanced skills to benefit the U.S. economy.

“This is not an acceptable premise,” Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, said on CNN. “They (Trump and some Republican lawmakers) want to cut legal immigration into the United States of family members, some of whom have waited 20 years or more to join up with their families here.”

A continued impasse would put to the test a pledge by Senate Majority Leader McConnell, a Kentucky Republican. Last month, McConnell secured enough Democratic support to end a three-day partial government shutdown by promising to start a floor debate on a DACA fix if no bipartisan immigration agreement had been reached by Feb. 8, when federal spending authority expires once again.