02:47 GMT +320 November 2019
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    French civil servants carry labour union flags as they march behind a banner during a national day of strikes by public sector workers, in Lyon, France, May 22, 2018

    French Public Sector Workers Protest Against Gov't Reforms (VIDEO)

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    PARIS (Sputnik) - French public sector employees took to the streets across the country protesting against the economic and socials reforms implemented by President Emmanuel Macron, France Info radio reported Tuesday.

    The police have used water cannons against union protesters in Paris, according to BFMTV reports.

    Peaceful protests in Paris have turned into riots. Protesters have smashed windows and set on fire trash cans. As a result of the unrest, 17 people were detained, the BFMTV broadcaster reported. Earlier media reports said that police had detained seven masked protesters.

    According to BFMTV, more than 16,000 people took part in the protest. 

    The France Info radio broadcaster reported, nine trade unions representing about 5.7 million people working in the public sector have agreed to carry out joint protests for the first time since 2010 and have organized about 130 rallies, with the one in Paris due to start at 2 p.m. local time (noon GMT).

    READ MORE: WATCH: Rail Workers Resume Protests in France

    The news outlet added that public sector employees are protesting against Macron's pledge to gradually cut 120,000 positions by 2022 as well as against the lack of funding provided to the public services.

    The situation has escalated recently, when students have shown solidarity with railroad workers protesting Macron's reform in the railway sector.

    The sectors of education, energy, health, postal services and transport are expected to become the most affected ones by the Tuesday protests, the media outlet said.

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