Saturday, 23 February, 2019

Yellow Vest Anti-Government Protests In France Turn Violent

Yellow vests protesters Yellow Vests Rally Hits Paris as Protests Continue for 13th Week Sputnik
Melinda Barton | 11 February, 2019, 07:11

The Paris Gilet Jaunes demonstrator was left bleeding heavily as violent protests continue to grip the French capital.

One witness who filmed the incident, 21-year-old Cyprien Royer, said the victim was a yellow jacket photographer taking pictures of people trying to break down the barriers protecting the entrance to the National Assembly.

Police used batons and fired tear gas in Paris to disperse demonstrators, some of whom threw debris at riot police.

On Saturday, 9 February, hundreds of Yellow Vests protesters took to the streets of Paris in the 13th week of protests to sweep across France.

Some of the paramedics served as a barrier to stop media and demonstrators from getting too close.

The AP reports police said the injured protester lost four fingers.

Such vehicles have been a common sight in Paris since deadly extremist attacks in 2015.

"Every day the military ... protects our compatriots from the risk of terrorism". But the Interior Ministry said the protests are much smaller than last week's. "These attacks are intolerable".

Police said 31 demonstrators had been arrested in the unrest.

The yellow vest protests began in mid-November, spurred by anger over high gas prices in rural areas where people depend on their cars because of no access to public transportation.

Despite a drop in numbers from the massive turnouts of the first demonstrations in November, tens of thousands still turned out in cities across the country to protest against French President Emmanuel Macron's policies. Recent polls show Macron's approval ratings are rising.

The activists waved Latvia's red-and-white flag, shouting slogans like "the French have woken up, while Latvians remain asleep".

"We have to win to have more social and fiscal justice in this country", said Mairesse, who was carrying a placard calling for the reimposition of a wealth tax on high earners repealed by Macron.