France: “A State of Insurrection” as Fuel Tax Riots Engulf Central Paris
Rioters ran amok across central Paris on Saturday, torching cars and buildings, looting shops, smashing windows and clashing with police in the worst unrest in more than a decade, posing a dire challenge to Emmanuel Macron’s presidency.
The authorities were caught off guard by the escalation in violence after two weeks of nationwide protests against fuel taxes and living costs, known as the “yellow vest” movement after fluorescent jackets kept in all vehicles in France.
In Paris, police said they had arrested almost 300 people while 110 were injured, including 20 members of the security forces. Police fired stun grenades, tear gas and water cannon at protesters at the top of the Champs-Elysees boulevard, at the Tuilleries Garden near the Louvre museum and other sites.
In some areas there was virtually no police presence at all, as groups of masked men roamed in the shadows of the capital’s fabled landmarks and through its fanciest shopping districts, smashing the windows of designer boutiques. Via: Reuters:
This is the start of a revolution
Paris rioters steal police assault rifle, torch dozens of cars and vow to 'stay in the streets until Christmas' as fuel protests continue into the night and spread across France - and even to Holland. The centre of Paris was on lockdown tonight after masked protesters stole an assault rifle from police, clashed with riot squads and set fire to cars on the Champs-Elysees in furious demonstrations against the French government.
Protesters said today's actions were 'the start of a revolution' that would eclipse the mass strikes and occupation of universities and factories in 1968 when the country was on the cusp of civil war. Via The Daily Mail:
Revolutionary scenes as yellow vests movement spreads over Europe
France’s yellow vest movement has spread to at least three other European countries. The movement started as an opposition to high fuel taxes but is now focused on governments as well, as people feel unheard. Via Voice of Europe