About 2000 people took to the streets of Berlin for “Pulse of Europe”, a demo for a United Europe. Similar demos popped up in other German cities from Frankfurt to Cologne and in other European nations like Ireland and France.
The main goal of the events was to show opposition to the idea of a French exit from the EU. In Berlin,crowds shouted the French motto “liberty, equality, fraternity”, held posters in French which read “In the name of friendship” and chanted “vive l’Europe”.
One demonstrator explained why he had decided to attend. He said:
“I think it’s great. It is important (to be here). For sure, just sitting at home is easier. But not staying attentive can lead to bad things.”
The mood was festive in Berlin’s Gendarmenmarkt, with people bursting into a rendition of Joe Dassin’s hit-song “Aux Champs Elysées”.
One young girl has a very pressing concern if France were to leave the EU. She told reporters:
“France must remain in the EU because otherwise we cannot eat French cheese anymore. And that would be terrible for me because I love cheese more than anything”
An excerpt from the demo’s manifesto affirms:
“We are convinced that most of the people believe in the founding idea of the European Union, of its further evolution and of its capacity to be reformed.”