Though a reason for the dismissal hasn’t been announced, French outlet Le Monde claims that the decision may be connected to the investigation of Macron’s ex-security aid Alexandre Benalla.
Head of Public Order and Traffic Control in Paris Alain Gibelin has been removed from office via a decree by French President Emmanuel Macron. His replacement was announced in the Journal Officiel de la République Française.
It is noted that Gibelin was sent “to his former division” in the position of chief commissioner.
Motives for such a decision have not been specified. However, as the Le Monde newspaper reported, the resignation of the police officer may be related to the investigation into the French president’s ex-security aid Alexander Benalla.
The latter allegedly accused Gibelin of lying during hearings in the French National Assembly about the conditions for the participation of the ex-presidential aide in an operation to ensure order at the demonstration on 1 May 2018, according to the report. The head of the Public Order and Traffic Control department denied that Benalla had permission from the police to work with law enforcement officers that day, the paper noted.
A scandal involving Benalla emerged in July after a video capturing Macron’s aide in riot police gear during a May Day demonstration was published online, where he first tackled a young woman and then lashed out at a young man. After the video appeared, Benalla insisted that he was helping the police dealing with aggressive protesters.High-End Venues in Paris Looted, Set on Fire Amid Protests