European court sides with Macron as French firemen lose battle against mandatory vaccines

Emmanuel Macron portrait smashed by protestors in Poitiers

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More than 670 professional and volunteer firemen had complained that compulsory jabs are a violation of their human rights. However, the Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights rejected their application and said the complaint fell outside their scope. But its ruling did not exclude future cases on the issue if mandatory vaccinations are found to cause “a real risk of irreparable damage” to firefighters.

In France, all firefighters, police officers, healthcare workers and carers must be fully vaccinated by October 15 or risk losing their jobs.

This triggered complaints from 672 French firefighters that applied to the ECHR, which is separate from the European Union, to suspend the government ruling requiring them to be jabbed against COVID-19.

They said the obligatory coronavirus vaccines were a threat to their “right to life” and “respect for private and family life”.

But the Strasbourg-based court dismissed their complaint.

The SUD SDIS union which brought the case described the verdict as an “extreme disappointment”.

Remy Chabbouh, national secretary of the union, has vowed to keep fighting.

He said there are concerns a “large proportion” of his colleagues could be radicalised because of mandatory vaccination requirements.

The laws introduced by President Macron to boost vaccination rates have already provoked huge protests across the country.

He has told healthcare workers that they will face suspension without pay from November if they refuse the jab.

SUD SDIS has filed an unlimited national strike notice to demand the “withdrawal” of the obligation to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

Mr Chabbouh said: “The aim is not at all to increase the number of strikers or protesters, but to protect staff who do not wish to be vaccinated and who are waiting for a solution.”

Some health workers have said they would rather quit their jobs than get vaccinated.

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Nursing home worker Sandra Barona, who cares for elderly residents in a home southwest of Paris, suggested the diktat goes against French freedoms.

She said: “We have rights in France.

“We live in a country which believes in freedom, equality.”

Mr Macron has also been accused of forcing through mandatory vaccines via the backdoor with his Covid health pass scheme.

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In order to access restaurants, bars and public transport, French people have to provide proof of vaccination or a negative test.

Millions of people have taken to the streets to protest against the system, which critics claim is damaging their liberties and freedoms.

Earlier this month, Mr Macron said the vaccine passport will help protect French freedoms.

He said: “It’s about citizenship.

“Freedom only exists if the freedom of everyone is protected… it’s worth nothing if by exercising our freedom we contaminate our brother, neighbour, friend, parents, or someone we have come across at an event. Then freedom becomes irresponsibility.”

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