(August 1, 2021 / Israel Hayom) French President Emmanuel Macron’s attorneys announced last week that he is planning to sue a billboard owner for depicting him as Adolf Hitler.
Several such images were placed across the southern province of Vaud as part of a broader backlash against Macron’s coronavirus restrictions policy.
One billboard in the city of Toulon portrayed Macron in a uniform as the Nazi leader, with a hairstyle and mustache similar to Hitler’s. The swastika armband was changed to LREM—La République En Marche—the name of Macron’s ruling party. An accompanying slogan read: “Obey. Get vaccinated.”
???????? FLASH – Emmanuel #Macron dépose plainte contre le Varois à l’origine des affiches le représentant en Hitler. Michel-Ange #Flori, l’afficheur controversé doit être entendu dans le cadre d’une enquête pour “injure publique sur la personne du président de la République”. (FrBleu) pic.twitter.com/i3KyReMiaT
— Mediavenir (@Mediavenir) July 28, 2021
Michel-Ange Flori, who created and distributed the posters, told the French daily Var-Matin: “I was summoned by the local police. They confirmed that they had received a complaint from Elysee Palace [the official residence of the French president]. I was surprised and shocked.”
He later tweeted: “In Macron-land, [Charlie Hebdo‘s] showing the Prophet’s rear is satire, but making fun of Macron as a dictator is a blasphemy.”
Born in Corsica, Flori owns 400 billboards through Var and has a history of controversies. In 2019, during the “yellow vest” protests, he was fined 30,000 euros ($36,000) for using his billboards to criticize police conduct.
This report first appeared in Israel Hayom.
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