Paris on lockdown as ‘Yellow Jacket’ riots sweep France – 350 arrested
Paris is on lockdown as armed police battle to contain ‘yellow vest’ rioters with 350 arrests so far in the fourth straight weekend of demonstrations over living costs and proposed tax rises in France.
Thousands of police were deployed across the country ahead of the chaos, with 8,000 in Paris.
Furious protestors have billed the weekend as “Act IV” in a dramatic challenge to Macron, despite the President climbdown over the unpopular fuel tax reforms.
Interior Minister Christophe Castaner warned rioters of a “robust response”, calling on peaceful protesters not to get mixed up with “hooligans”.
Dozens of streets in central Paris were closed to traffic, while the Eiffel Tower and world-famous museums such as the Musee d’Orsay, the Centre Pompidou, and the Louvre were closed.
Many shops were boarded up to avoid looting and street furniture and construction site materials have been removed to prevent them from being used as projectiles. About 89,000 police were deployed across the country.
Child rioters as young as 12 were among 153 arrested Friday morning at a single high school in France.
Astonishing video of police guarding the youngsters from the Lycée Saint-Exupéry, in Mante-la-Jolie, some 30 miles west of Paris, was posted on social media.
The children and teenagers have their hands behind their heads and are on their knees, while some have their faces pushed up against a wall.
All had allegedly taken part in a nationwide day of action aimed at blockading schools and colleges in opposition to reform of the education system, and in support of the Yellow Vest demonstrators.
The French government on Wednesday announced the winners of the 2018 Human Rights Prize of the French Republic, endowed by the French Prime Minister. This year’s prize is awarded to two radical leftist pro-Palestinian organizations dedicated to criticizing Israel’s response to violent Muslim riots, as France weighs state of emergency to respond to its own violent riots.
French police have been filmed beating up a lone protester during a weekend of violence that saw three people killed and officers lose control on the streets of Paris due to riots over Emmanuel Macron’s controversial reforms.