“We are here to stand in solidarity with the people who are resisting this project and this madness,” Thunberg stated, wearing a Palestinian keffiyeh.”Unfortunately, these kinds of projects are not unique to France but are happening all over the world and are a symptom of a global crisis,” she said.
The protest in Saix, where the motorway is planned, had been banned by the French authorities due to concerns about public order. On Friday, tear gas was fired by the police, and arrests were made at the site. Despite the ban, organisers Cabanade went ahead with the protest. Although the organisers had anticipated a larger turnout on Saturday, only around a hundred people braved the rain to participate.
Despite opposition, the government remains determined to complete the A69 project, which aims to reduce travel time between Toulouse and Castres by 20 minutes and is expected to open in 2025. The president of the local Tarn department expressed the necessity of the A69 autoroute for the region and its inhabitants.
Thunberg, known globally for her activism against climate change, has faced legal consequences for her direct-action protests in Sweden. However, a recent case against her in an English court was dismissed.