Climate activists convicted for removing Macron portrait
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Climate activists convicted for removing Macron portrait

FILE - In this photo taken on Friday May 24, 2019, youths hold the official portrait of French President Emmanuel Macron during a climate march in Paris.Six French activists were convicted Wednesday June 12, 2019 for theft after taking down an official portrait of President Emmanuel Macron to protest his climate change policies they consider as not strong enough. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, File)

BOURG-EN-BRESSE, France — Six French environmental activists have been convicted of theft for removing an official portrait of President Emmanuel Macron to protest his climate change policies.

Five activists were sentenced Wednesday to a suspended 500-euro fine — they won’t have to pay unless they commit the offence again. One, who has a previous conviction, will have to pay a 250-euro fine.

They were also ordered to give back Macron’s portrait to the town hall from where they took it in March.

The verdict in the eastern town of Bourg-en-Bresse is the first of several similar trials across the country.

Internationally, Macron is a vocal champion of fighting climate change, but domestically activists accuse him of lagging on promises to wean France from fossil fuels.

Nicolas Vaux-Montagny, The Associated Press

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