Jose Bove arrested again at anti-GM protest

14th April 2006, Comments 0 comments

LUNEL, France, April 14, 2006 (AFP) - French anti-globalisation icon José Bové was arrested on Thursday on the sidelines of a protest targeting the US biotech group Monsanto, but was released a few hours later.

LUNEL, France, April 14, 2006 (AFP) - French anti-globalisation icon José Bové was arrested on Thursday on the sidelines of a protest targeting the US biotech group Monsanto, but was released a few hours later.

Around 100 members of Greenpeace and of Bové's Small Farmer's Confederation broke into a Monsanto site in Trèbes, near Carcassonne in southwestern France, where they suspect the company stocks genetically-modified (GM) seeds.

Bové was arrested along with a fellow activist after the protest wound up, in the centre of Trèbes, by four armed officers, his companion Ghislaine Dambrun told AFP.

He was brought to Lunel further east near Montpellier where he was released shortly before midnight. Some 50 supporters were waiting for him outside the police station.

"We discovered documents leading us to believe that Monsanto is stocking GM maize seeds on this site," Bové said earlier, accusing the French government of tolerating a "lack of transparency" from biotech firms.

The farmer-activist, who has campaigned fiercely against GM foods in Europe, has served jail terms for ripping out GM crops as well as for wrecking a McDonald's outlet in southern France in 1999.

Sixty percent of the French are hostile to GM crops, polls show, and 78 percent would back a temporary moratorium until their impact on health and the environment is fully understood.

Half of all open-field GM crop trials carried out in France in 2004 were ripped out by anti-GM campaigners, according to the Commission on Biomolecular Engineering (CGB).

Court decisions last year acquitting two groups of activists who destroyed GMO crops have further bolstered opposition to the experimental plantations.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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