Sunday 22 September 2019

French PM holds talks after violent protests in Paris

More than 100 people were hurt at the weekend after France’s worst urban rioting in years.

The aftermath of the rioting in Paris (AP)
The aftermath of the rioting in Paris (AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

French prime minister Edouard Philippe is holding crisis talks with representatives of major political parties in the wake of violent anti-government protests that have rocked Paris.

More than 100 people were injured in the French capital and 412 were arrested over the weekend during France’s worst urban riot in years, with dozens of cars torched.

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A woman walks past graffiti reading “Paris is ours”, near the Arc de Triomphe (AP)

President Emmanuel Macron held an emergency meeting on security with Mr Philippe on Sunday and the government has not ruled out the possibility of imposing a state of emergency.

It is the third straight weekend of clashes in Paris.

The protests began last month with motorists upset over a fuel tax hike and have grown to encompass a range of complaints that Mr Macron’s government does not care about the problems of ordinary people.

Activists wearing fluorescent yellow high-visibility vests torched cars, smashed windows, looted stores, threw rocks at police and tagged the Arc de Triomphe with graffiti on Sunday.

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A smashed window displays a yellow vest, showing support for protesters, in the centre of Paris (AP)

Police responded with tear gas and water cannon, closing down dozens of streets and Metro stations to contain the riot.

More anti-government protests took place on Monday as ambulance workers took to the streets and gathered close to the National Assembly in Paris to complain about changes to working conditions.

Protesters set tyres on fire and blocked traffic as an activist held a board reading: “The State killed me.”

PA Media

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