Published: Sun, December 09, 2018
Worldwide | By Angelina Lucas

Barricades burn as new 'yellow vest' protests hit Paris

Barricades burn as new 'yellow vest' protests hit Paris

By mid-afternoon Saturday, police arrested more than 1,000 people nationwide and held 720 in custody, with 135, including security personnel, injured.

Almost 1,400 people were detained across France, according to Castaner.

The rumble of armoured police vans and the hiss of tear gas filled central Paris as French riot police fought to contain thousands of yellow-vested protesters.

REUTERS/Christian Hartmann Tear gars floats in the air around protesters wearing yellow vests during clashes with French Gendarmes on the Champs-Elysees Avenue as part of a demonstration by the "yellow vests" movement in Paris, France, December 8, 2018.

US President Donald Trump on Saturday once again attacked the Paris agreement on fighting climate change, citing ongoing protests in the French capital as proof that he was right to reject the pact.

Last weekend Trump also cited the protests in France to defend his decision to pull the USA out of the climate agreement reached in December 2015.

Coordinated "yellow vest" protests were taking place across the country on Saturday, including on numerous motorways, causing havoc on the national road network.

Some 8,000 police were deployed, carrying out checks on people arriving at train stations and at protest hotspots such as the Champs-Elysees and Bastille monument.

More than 950 people were detained across France, according to a police source.

Gendarmerie police said they had checked more than 5,000 people on the roads around the capital in the morning, confiscating potential weapons and protective equipment.

A screengrab of the video

French authorities on Saturday arrested more than 650 protesters during the latest wave of anti-government protests over a hike in fuel prices in the capital, worldwide media reported.

After being taken by surprise by the scale of last weekend's violence, Paris prepared by closing many museums, asking shops on the Champs-Elysees to shutter, and postponing yesterday's Paris Saint-Germain-Montpellier football match.

But numerous "yellow vests" are holding out for more.

A vehicle burns during a protest of yellow vests (gilets jaunes) against rising costs of living near Paris city Hall on December 8, 2018.

Now the movement is making other demands, such as taxing the rich and raising the minimum wage.

Protests at dozens of schools over university reforms, and a call by farmers for demonstrations next week, have added to a sense of general revolt.

A popular demand is a reversal of his decision to slash taxes on France's wealthiest in a bid to boost investment and create jobs - something he has so far ruled out.

That climbdown marked a major departure for a president who had vowed, unlike predecessors, not to be swayed by mass protests.

But the policy, along with hikes on pensioners' taxes, cuts in housing allowances and a string of comments deemed insensitive to ordinary workers, has led critics to label him a "president of the rich".

The UN's independent panel of climate experts in October issued its starkest findings yet: emissions from fossil fuels must be slashed by half within 12 years in order to hit the Paris goals of limited temperature rises.

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