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Yellow vest protests: Dozens of arrests in Paris


A woman runs from tear gas on the Champs ElyseesImage copyright AFP
Image caption Tear gas was used on Paris’ famous avenue the Champs Elysees to disperse protesters

Dozens of demonstrators have been arrested in Paris following a resurgence of the yellow vest protests that started last year.

Several hundred protesters gathered at different points in the French capital and over 39 were swiftly arrested.

A huge security operation was planned amid fears the protesters would clash with a climate change march.

The majority of demonstrators did not wear the trademark hi-vis jackets to avoid being visible.

Police, who have previously been accused of heavy-handedness, used tear gas to disperse groups of protesters.

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Media captionDramatic footage shows a police crackdown on Paris yellow vest protesters

The gilets jaunes (yellow vest) movement started last November over increased fuel prices, evolving into weekly protests that continued well into the spring.

They accused President Emmanuel Macron of being out of touch and often turned violent.

The protests prompted Mr Macron to introduce reforms including tax cuts and a more decentralised government.

One of Saturday’s protesters told French media outlet Le Monde that they continued to protest because of “injustice” but said they were worried about the “bad image” of the yellow vests.

“I am not a thug,” they insisted.

Saturday’s protests interfered with France’s annual Heritage Day, when well-known sites open their doors to the public.

On Friday, President Macron said it was good that that people could express themselves but asked that the protests proceeded in a “calm” manner.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Protesters set up barricades in Paris streets on Saturday

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