CAYENNE, French Guiana (AP) — Clashes between protesters and police forces have marred the first day of French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to French Guiana.
Macron’s visit started in a tense climate, six month after a general strike over crime and economic hardship paralyzed the impoverished South American territory.
Macron warned upon his arrival Thursday that he didn’t come “to make promises” and said “I’m not Santa Claus because Guiana people are not children.”
French media quoting local prosecutor Eric Vaillant reported Friday that police forces used tear gas to disperse a gathering of protesters, which later throw Molotov cocktails and projectiles near Cayenne police headquarters. Five people were arrested during the clashes which took place overnight and a police officer was slightly injured.