Right-Wing Feminist Arrested for Denouncing Immigration and Violence Against Women

By Hélène de Lauzun – European Conservative

A young woman was arrested in the eastern French city of Besançon and taken into custody for holding up a sign calling for the deportation of foreign rapists. She faces up to a year in prison. Her lawyer has stated that she intends to lodge a complaint for “infringement of personal freedom.”

During Besançon’s carnival on Saturday, April 6th, two young women, one of them a 19-year-old, held up signs in the street reading: “Violeurs étrangers dehors” and “Libérez-nous de l’immigration” (“Foreign Rapists Away”, and “Free us from immigration”). On one of the facades of the Grande Rue, one of Besançon’s main thoroughfares, they also unfurled a banner pointing out that “46 women could have been spared if the OQTFs (Obligation de Quitter le Territoire Français for Obligation to Leave French Territory) had been applied in 2023”. They both belong to the feminist identity group Némésis, which regularly denounces the increase in violence against women due to the massive influx of immigrants who do not respect the rules of Western society with regard to women.

The mayor of Besançon, a member of the Ecologist party, denounced the association made “between migrants and rapists,” and announced that she would be filing a complaint on behalf of the city for “incitement to hatred.”

Following this complaint, one of the two activists, Yona, was taken into custody. She faces up to a year’s imprisonment. A police raid was carried out at her parents’ home in an attempt to recover the offending banner, while Yona’s computer was placed under seal by a magistrate.

The president of the collective, Alice Cordier, expressed her indignation on X about the disproportionate treatment of the case. She defended herself to Le Figaro, pointing out that Némésis was merely pointing out proven truths and asking for things to be done legally: “First of all, we put up a banner explaining that 46 women, who were either raped or killed, could have been saved if the OQTFs had been applied. We calculated this figure by looking at all the news items reported in the press over the course of a year. This figure is undoubtedly lower than the reality,” she explains, before adding:

We are calling for the deportation of rapists who do not have French nationality, but we are not saying that all foreigners are rapists.

In her defence, Alice Cordier points out that Marlène Schiappa, former Secretary of State for Gender Equality during Emmanuel Macron’s first presidential term, was in favour of deporting foreign rapists: one of the “concrete solutions” that the collective wants to take up and propose.

This is not the first time that the Némésis collective has chosen to make its voice heard in cities run by the left. At the Braderie de Lille in September 2023, a major public event in this metropolis run by the socialist Martine Aubry, the activists unfurled a banner denouncing the lack of safety and the growing Islamisation of the city, for which they became the object of a complaint for “incitement to racial hatred”. The collective retaliated by filing suits for defamation against the regional newspaper La Voix du Nord, which described the banners as “extremist against Islam,” and Libération, which described them as “racist banners” and an “Islamophobic happening.”

The collective’s lawyer, Frédéric Pichon, denounced the proceedings brought by the mayor of Besançon, as being purely for political purposes. “It’s political, but legally it doesn’t hold water. These are methods of intimidation. Being hostile to immigration is the expression of an opinion,” he told Le Figaro. In return, he announced that the collective would be filing a complaint for “infringement of personal freedom by a person in a position of public authority.”

The announcement of Yona’s arrest sparked a wave of indignation on right-wing social media, which expressed their support for the members of Némésis.

Feminist figures such as Marguerite Stern also came out in support of Alice Cordier and her group. The collective, which recently launched an urgent appeal for donations, has been in turmoil for several months after having its bank account closed and having been successively refused by several banks.

Yona was finally released at the end of the day on April 9th.

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