In France, on the eleventh day of national protests against raising the retirement age, acts of vandalism took place and dozens of demonstrators were arrested. There were also injuries. According to the authorities, 570 thousand people demonstrated.
Protests took place across the country today against increasing the retirement age from 62 to 64. According to unions, 400,000 people were commuting in Paris. More than three hundred people invaded La Rotonde restaurant, where President Emmanuel Macron celebrated his election victory in 2017. A fire broke out briefly.
Protesters also briefly entered the office of chief US asset manager BlackRock in the capital. Roads and universities were also closed, as was access to part of Charles de Gaulle airport.
arrests and injuries
Riots broke out in Paris, Lyon, Nantes and more. According to French media, demonstrators and at least four police officers were injured in the capital. By late afternoon, twenty people had been arrested. Shops were damaged in Lyon and police fired tear gas in Nantes. More than twenty people have been arrested there. In Lyon, nine officers were injured, and nine arrests were reported.
People also took to the streets in cities such as Bordeaux, Rennes, Brest, Nice, Marseille, Perpignan and Clermont-Ferrand, but generally fewer than on the previous big protest day at the end of March. The authorities expected the number of protesters to reach 800,000 across the country. Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin reported that the police, who detained 111 people, left 154 injured. Police released pictures of fireworks and projectiles such as rocks and bolts thrown by rioters.
The day before, the government and trade unions had held fruitless talks about what measures the government believed should make the pension system affordable again. The so-called Constitutional Council can still (partially) reverse the reform. Since Macron passed the law in mid-March, more than 1,850 arrests have been made in the riots, according to the government.
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