Charles Pieri during a demonstration in Ajaccio, February 3, 2018
Former FLNC leader Charles Pieri was taken into custody Tuesday in the investigation of a Facebook message insulting the widow of Prefect Erignac, just when a meeting was held in Paris on the future of the island in the presence of its leaders.
Summoned at 10:00 am at the gendarmerie of Ghisonaccia (Haute-Corse), Charles Pieri arrived with his two children, supported by a dozen sympathizers gathered at the call of Sulidarita, an association for the defense of so-called „political prisoners“.
He was to be questioned about a message posted on Facebook on the night of Tuesday 6 to Wednesday 7 February, after the ceremony of homage to the prefect Erignac organized in the presence of Emmanuel Macron. This short text, broadcast on the account „Di l’altu pianu“ attributed to Charles Pieri, compared in particular the widow of the prefect to French women who had sex with German soldiers during the Second World War.
The investigation, targeting acts of „insult by means of communication“, was opened by the public prosecutor in Ajaccio, Eric Bouillard.
The detention in custody of Charles Pieri occurred at the same time as a meeting in Paris, under the auspices of the „Mrs. Corse“ of the government Jacqueline Gourault and in the presence of the nationalist leaders of the island, Gilles Simeoni and Jean- Guy Talamoni, on the inscription of Corsica in the Constitution – a measure announced by Emmanuel Macron during his visit.
Deploring Tuesday morning on CNews a „foul statement, abject“, Ms. Gourault welcomed the reaction „fast, clear and clear“ Gilles Simeoni, president of the Corsican executive council, who strongly denounced the message posted on Facebook as of Sunday noon. The minister, on the other hand, considered it „worrying“ that Pieri took a leading role „in the party of Jean-Guy Talamoni“, Corsica Libera.
– ‚Tutelary shadow‘ –
„The content of this text is unacceptable and contrary to what I am and what I think, philosophically, ethically and politically,“ Gilles Simeoni told AFP. Jean-Guy Talamoni waited Monday to react on his behalf, after a reaction of his party: „Whatever the author, I do not share for my part neither the form nor the content“.
In a rare interview given to Corse-matin, Charles Pieri announced before Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Corsica to „take over a position of executive officer“ of Corsica Libera. He had then participated in the demonstration organized at the call of MM. Talamoni and Simeoni on February 3, just before the visit of the head of state.
Asked by AFP during this demonstration on the return to the forefront of Mr. Pieri in the governing bodies of Corsica Libera, Mr. Talamoni had judged that his presence was „in the order of things“. „Charles Pieri has always been part of Corsica Libera, and today he is responsible again,“ he said, saying it was „the normal operation of a political organization“.
Charles Pieri’s reappearance on the public scene, however, could prove to be a thorn in the feet of nationalist leaders, as discussions resume with the government. For the political scientist Xavier Crettiez, the former leader of the FLNC could be seen as a „tutelary shadow“ over the heads of MM. Talamoni and Simeoni and „be used by Paris to distance a number of nationalist claims“.
Tuesday, it is the only one of their demands to which Emmanuel Macron did not oppose a refusal of reception that MM. Simeoni and Talamoni must discuss with Mme Gourault, namely the inscription of Corsica in the Constitution. „This is the beginning of a concrete discussion“, „we will ask representatives of the community of Corsica what they want precisely through the constitutional amendment,“ she said.