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28 January 2019 - 12:33
News ID: 443179
A
France:
Thousands of Yellow Vests returned to the streets of France on Saturday to protest against President Emmanuel Macron's policies, clashing with police in several cities in a challenge to his bid to quell the movement.

RNA - At least 223 Yellow Vest demonstrators were arrested on Saturday in the French capital Paris, where the police officers used tear gas and water canon on the protesters, according to World News.

Police fired tear gas and water cannon to push back demonstrators at Place de la Bastille in Paris, one of the regular protest areas, as some demonstrators threw stones from a building site.

France Info broadcaster reported that about 69,000 people took part in Yellow Vest rallies across France on Saturday, including 4,000 protesters in Paris alone. Last week, 84,000 demonstrators participated in the rallies in the country with 7,000 in the capital.

In Paris and other cities, the yellow vest movement had called for the rallies to continue into the night.

French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner condemned the violence in Paris, saying on Twitter, "I resolutely condemn the violence and destruction conducted on Saturday both in Paris and in the province by hooligans in yellow vests."

Twitter users responded to Castaner's statement, condemning police actions.

Yellow Vest movement leader Jerome Rodriguez, an associate of the movement's founder Eric Drouet, sustained an eye injury in clashes at the Place de la Bastille in Paris as a result of which he may lose his eye.

This Saturday became the eleventh one in a row when France faced Yellow Vest protests that are often accompanied by riots and clashes of demonstrators with the police.

The wave of the so-called yellow vest protesters — named after the obligatory attribute of French drivers — started in France in mid-November. The French government has scrapped its planned hike in diesel taxes that sparked the protests and introduced a number of measures to resolve the nation's economic and social crisis, but the yellow vests have since morphed into a broader movement against government policies and rising living costs.

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