Europe 1 with AFP 7:19 p.m., March 10, 2022

Three months after the controversy caused by its installation on December 31, the European flag was again deployed on Thursday under the Arc de Triomphe on the occasion of the EU summit in Versailles to celebrate the French presidency of the Council of Europe. EU.

It should float for two days, until the end of the European summit in Versailles.

The European flag was again deployed on Thursday under the Arc de Triomphe on the occasion of the EU summit in Versailles, after the controversy caused by its installation on December 31 to celebrate the French presidency of the Council of the EU.

The starry blue flag was to fly for two days, until the end of the summit on Friday afternoon, said the Elysée.

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Candidates were already indignant on December 31

On December 31, its installation had provoked the anger of several presidential candidates including Marine Le Pen, Eric Zemmour, Valérie Pécresse and Jean-Luc Mélenchon, some denouncing an unpatriotic act, others demanding that a French flag be added above the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

The European flag was withdrawn less than two days later, "in accordance with the planned timing" according to the Elysée, while RN candidate Marine Le Pen claimed this withdrawal as a "beautiful patriotic victory".

Emmanuel Macron then denounced "a bad controversy" and said he was "proud" of this "symbol of peace" which, according to him, had been placed under the monument at a time when "there was nothing", c ie no tricolor flag.

Several other monuments, like the Eiffel Tower, remained lit in blue for a week.

A European summit in Versailles on the conflict in Ukraine

President Emmanuel Macron welcomes the leaders of the 26 other EU countries late Thursday afternoon for an informal summit intended to lay the foundations for a more sovereign Europe after the shock of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The RN candidate Marine Le Pen estimated, on the sidelines of an intervention before the firefighters, that the president was "in a permanent provocation with regard to the French people".

"He despises their national" and "patriotic" feeling.

"In reality he wants to replace national sovereignty with European sovereignty."

LR candidate Valérie Pécresse, questioned at a press conference after an EPP meeting in Paris, said that as a "patriot and European", she would have "preferred that the French and European flag kiss each other under the 'Arc de Triomphe, what Nicolas Sarkozy had done'.

"Emmanuel Macron likes to humiliate the French Nation. The proof: he does it again," his far-right rival Eric Zemmour said indignantly on Twitter.

"New indignity of Emmanuel Macron. Our soldiers died for France and the tricolor honors them! To substitute that of the European Union is an outrage", criticized the sovereignist candidate Nicolas Dupont-Aignan on the same social network.

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