“It was unfounded when two women were criticized for their clothes on the beach,” Gerald Darmanin tweeted on Monday. “Freedom is a precious asset. ”
Bare-breasted bathing is legal in France, although local authorities may impose dress codes in specific areas. No such restriction was in place for Sainte-Marie la Mer beach.
Local police released a statement saying that officers were just trying to calm the mood after a family vacationing on the beach told police that topless bathers made them uncomfortable.
The spokesperson for the national gendarmerie service acknowledged a “blunder” by the police in question – but added, ironically, that “you will always see me in uniform”.