Autonomy for Corsica?
After days of violent protests, French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has held out the prospect of autonomy for Corsica. The riots were triggered by an attack on the well-known and widely admired Corsican nationalist Yvann Colonna in a prison in Arles at the beginning of March. Colonna has been in a coma ever since. The press questions France's policy towards the island.
First disregard, then rash action
President Macron's approach to the question is disastrous, says Médiapart:
“Above all because it took days of violence before the government decided to react, even though the demands of the nationalists have been known for years and have met with approval at every election, territorial, local and parliamentary. ... The president wipes the demands of the nationalist majority off the agenda for five years and then hastily puts together a solution to overcome the crisis 26 days before the presidential election. He has harmed his own cause by acting this way. Indeed, the current situation shines a harsh light on Macron's way of wielding power like a headstrong loner.”
The island's concerns were ignored
The current situation reveals grievances that have existed for decades, Le Figaro writes in anger:
“Technocrats incapable of recognising the deep-seated attachment felt by the people of the Island of Beauty more than anywhere else in the country. ... The barely concealed contempt for any department or territory a little distant from Paris; the ignorance of history, that teaches us that Corsica is always proud to belong to France when France is strong. ... And finally, the levity with which profound changes concerning territorial integrity are proposed between two campaign promises. ... If Corsica drifts away, it is because France is falling apart.”