The southern French port city hosts the La Plaine event every March. But this year’s unauthorized party was also partly a protest against continued coronavirus lockdowns and restrictions on movement.
Police in Marseille, France used tear gas to break up a crowd of thousands who took part in an unauthorized carnival on March 21, in breach of coronavirus lockdown rules. Usually, Marseille hosts the La Plaine carnival every March, but last year’s event was canceled due to the outbreak of the global pandemic.
France Bleu Provence, a local radio station, reported that as many as 6,500 people attended the gathering in the city. A street festival in Marseille that attracted crowds of merrymakers ended with tear gas and fines after local authorities declared the event unlawful and dispatched police to clear out the area.