French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday reiterated his rude remarks about the country’s minority of COVID-19 vaccine deniers, saying he could not accept that they were violating the freedom of others.
The 44-year-old outspoken president, who is expected to seek re-election later this year, made headlines earlier this week using the word “emmerder” – rooted in the French word for “shit” and meaning to revolt or fool. . He talked about his strategy of forcing vaccine deniers to get coronavirus jabs. His vulgar language dominated news broadcasts and provoked angry reactions from his political rivals.
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At a press conference in Paris, Macron admitted that the term may have disturbed some, but said he takes full responsibility for it.
“When some make from their freedom… a motto, they not only put the lives of others at stake, but they also restrict the freedom of others. I can not accept that, “he said, referring to unvaccinated people. “When you are a citizen, you must agree to perform your civic duty.”
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France’s strategy is to “vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate,” he insisted as the country this week reported Europe’s highest infection rate ever in one day. About 77 percent of the population, including more than 91 percent of the adults, are fully vaccinated.
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Macron also advocated for the new vaccine passport to encourage more people to get the vaccine by restricting the social life of the non-vaccinated.
The measure will exclude unvaccinated people from places such as restaurants, cinemas, theaters, museums and sports arenas. The passport will also be required on interregional trains and buses and on domestic flights.
The bill is due to be debated in the Senate next week. The government hopes to get it in place around mid-January.
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