French President Emmanuel Macron was slapped in the face during an official visit to southeastern France.
In a video circulated on social media, Macron was seen walking to a checkpoint during a trip to the Drôme area outside Valencia.
Macron’s man was slapped in the face before officers quickly moved towards him. Meanwhile, the president was pulled away.
French media reported that two men were arrested in the wake of the incident. As the president was slapped, a chant of “down with macaroni” was heard.
French politicians were quick to denounce the incident.
Shortly after the incident, Prime Minister Jan Casteks told the National Assembly that while democracy meant legitimate debate and disagreement, “it must in no way mean violence, verbal abuse, and even the least physical abuse.”
The leader of the extreme left, Jean-Luc Melenchon, tweeted, stressing his “solidarity with the president” immediately after the slap.
President Macron is currently on a tour of France and had just visited a hotel school in the southeast of the country. Officials said his visit to the region is scheduled to continue on Tuesday, with a trip to a vocational institute for young people aged 25-30.
The president’s visit comes on the eve of a major step for French bars and restaurants, which will be able to reopen their doors to customers after seven months of closure. The night curfew in France will also be eased, starting tomorrow, Wednesday, to start at 23:00 instead of at 21:00.