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France President Emmanuel Macron slapped in the face

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French President Emmanuel Macron has been slapped in the face on an official visit to the south-east of France.

In a video circulating on social media, Mr Macron is seen walking up to a barrier on a trip to Tain-l’Hermitage outside the city of Valence.

A man in a green T-shirt slaps Mr Macron in the face before officers quickly move in. The president, meanwhile, is pulled away.

Two men have been arrested following the incident, French media report.

The man reportedly shouted “Down with Macron-ism” as he slapped the president, as well as “Montjoie, Saint-Denis” – the battle-cry of the old Kingdom of France, in reference to the banner of King Charlemagne.

In the video Mr Macron briefly returned to the barrier after the incident and once again interacted with the crowd.

As yet the identity and motive of the man are unclear. The local prefecture said he and another individual are being questioned by the gendarmerie, in a statement reported by AFP news agency.

Officers were out in force on the streets of Valence shortly after the slap, according to one French journalist’s tweet.

Who protects President Macron?

French presidents are protected by the Security Group for the Presidency of the Republic, known as GSPR.

It was set up in 1983 and is reportedly composed of 77 men and women to protect Mr Macron during events.

According to French TV channel BFM, officers scout locations before a presidential visit. Armed personnel are then assigned to closely guard the president on the trip itself.

The channel reports that 10 members of the GSPR were with Mr Macron on Tuesday’s trip.

SourceBBC

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