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    French labour union workers and students attend a demonstration against the French labour law proposal in Marseille, France, as part of a nationwide labor reform protests and strikes, March 31, 2016

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    Manifestations and riots have become commonplace in France; here’s a selection of the most resonant demonstrations in the country: from protests against labor reforms in 2016 to recent march against President Macron’s economic policy.

    March 2018

    Some 200,000 protesters marched nationwide against President Emmanuel Macron’s economic measures, including 49,000 in Paris alone. Riot police clashed with masked and hooded youths; the police had to use water cannons to quell the resistance. As a result of the strike, public services were disrupted, flights and trains canceled, schools closed.

    December 2017

    Hundreds of pro-Palestinian demonstrators took to the streets of Paris to protest US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and begin preparations to relocate the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to the city a day ahead of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to the capital.

    July 2017

    Paris was hit by protests on July 14, Bastille Day, at the end of Donald Trump’s visit to the capital, as his opponents gathered in the streets. Minor clashes between the mask-wearing demonstrators and law enforcement officers occurred during the manifestation, with the latter letting the march continue despite protesters throwing glass bottles at police. Many were holding banners and placards with messages such as “Save the planet, resist Trump,” “Make the Planet Great Again.”

    May 2017

    Large protests against Marine Le Pen of the right-wing National Front erupted in the City of Lights on May 1, resulting in fierce clashes between the police and demonstrators. Security forces deployed a water cannon and used tear gas in a bid to quell the crowds as masked young people threw Molotov cocktails at law enforcement officers.

    June 2016

    Tens of thousands of French people took part in a protest against labor reforms; around 2,000 riot police were deployed to deter the crowds and prevent violent clashes. The demonstrators were marching against government reforms that facilitated the process of hiring and firing workers and could increase working hours.


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    riot, labor reform, protests, Marine Le Pen, Emmanuel Macron, France
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