Violence has erupted on the streets of Paris again as May Day protests have taken over the city and turned into violence as police, on Macron’s orders, met demonstrators fiercely with tear gas in the city’s Vavin neighbourhood.
French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner has warned that “radical activists” could infiltrate the union and Yellow Vest protests nationwide.
More than 7,400 police have been deployed in Paris, where the main union protest will march from the Montparnasse train station to the Place d’Italie, in the south of the city.
So far French police said it had made 165 arrests by early afternoon and had conducted more than 9,000 searches.
Heightened security has been put in place across Paris for this year’s demonstrations amid ongoing tension with the gilets jaunes movement, and climate protesting.
Sur les gilets s’affichent les principales revendications du mouvement : le référendum d’initiative citoyenne, la baisse de la TVA, la baisse du train de vie des élus et la hausse des salaires. #1erMai2019 #Paris @France24_fr pic.twitter.com/r04bXrsboN
— Julia Dumont (@Julia_Dmt) May 1, 2019
It’s feared that hooligans bent on violence in the French capital will join the “gilets jaunes”, as trade unionists, students and others turn out to mark International Workers’ Day.
President Emmanuel Macron’s recent promise of tax cuts and other reforms have been rejected in some quarters.
— Julien Damboise (@JDANDOU) May 1, 2019
Authorities have ordered at least 580 shops and restaurants along the protest route to close as a precaution.
Demonstrations have been banned at a number of locations in the French capital, including the Champs-Elysées Avenue, the nearby Elysée presidential palace and the area around the Notre-Dame Cathedral.
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