French Yellow Vest Anti-Government Protests Turn Violent in Paris

Sergio Conner
February 11, 2019

A yellow vest protester had his hand "blown off" in clashes with police in France.

PARIS-A French yellow vest protester's hand was ripped apart on February 9, during violent clashes in Paris as demonstrators tried to storm the French National Assembly in a 13th consecutive week of unrest. Although the number of protesters is falling slightly - officials counted 51,000 nationwide this weekend - they retain their capacity to cause chaos, in part due to the presence of extremists from both the left and right.

In Paris, 36 demonstrators were arrested.

"He wanted to bat it away so it didn't explode by his leg - and it went off when he touched it", he added.

"We mustn't give up", said pensioner Serge Mairesse, from Aubervilliers, just outside Paris. This was the 11th time he had marched with the movement, he said.

More than 50,000 people associated with the anti-Macron movement marched across France, according to police reports.

"It's all very good, the great debate, but we want something concrete: fewer taxes, more purchasing power".

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Protests also took place in other French cities, including Marseille, Montpellier, Bordeaux and Toulouse, the BBC noted.

"We're not children, we're adults", said Hugues Salone, a computer engineer from Paris, among the chanting and placard-waving protesters.

A vehicle, motorbikes and multiple trash bins were set ablaze as the protest moved toward the city's Invalides monument but France's Interior Ministry said this week's protest was significantly smaller than last week's. Recent polls show Macron's approval ratings are rising.

The protests have brought hundreds of thousands of people out onto the streets all over France. It was carried out on January 30 and 31.

Mr Ferrand, a close ally of the president, published pictures on Twitter of his scorched living room, saying police had found a blanket soaked in fuel.

No one has been hurt and no individual or group has so far been implicated in the incidents.

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