PARIS (Reuters) – Paris police fired water cannon and tear gas to repel “yellow vest” demonstrators from around the Arc de Triomphe monument on Saturday in the ninth straight weekend of protests against French President Emmanuel Macron’s economic reforms.
Thousands of protesters also marched noisily but peacefully through the Grands Boulevards shopping area in northern Paris close to where a major gas explosion in a bakery killed two firefighters and injured nearly 50 people early on Saturday.
Paris - Eruption - Violence - Elements - Gilets
Central Paris was in lockdown against another feared eruption of violence by radical elements in the “gilets jaunes” (yellow vest) movement, with bridges across the Seine river closed and official buildings such as parliament and the Elysee presidential palace protected by police barriers.
Groups of protesters also gathered on and around Paris’s famous Champs Elysees boulevard, the scene of disturbances in recent weeks, many of them calling loudly for Macron to resign.
Macron - Place - Banner - Read
“Macron, we are going to tear down your place!” one banner read.
Around the 19th-century Arc de Triomphe at the top of the Champs Elysee, riot police unleashed water cannon and tear gas at militant yellow-vest protesters after being pelted with stones and paint, witnesses said.
Mid-afternoon - Clashes - Police - Weeks - Paris
By mid-afternoon there had been no major clashes with police unlike in previous weeks. In Paris over 50 people were arrested, some for carrying objects that could be used as weapons.
There were also thousands of marchers in the cities of Bordeaux and Toulon in southern France as well as Strasbourg in the east and...
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Millions in tribute, but not a penny left for charity.