16:36 GMT +308 December 2019
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    A protestor wearing a yellow vest (gilet jaune) and with a French President Emmanuel Macron mask poses on the Champs Elysees avenue in Paris on December 8, 2018 during protest against rising costs of living they blame on high taxes.

    'Yellow Vests' Spokesman Says Movement Turned Into 'Real Opposition'

    © AFP 2019 / Zakaria ABDELKAFI
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The so-called yellow vest movement in France has turned into a real counterpower to the country's authorities, with the "yellow vest" protesters having its representatives throughout the country and shaping an independent political body, Christophe Chalencon, one of the movement's leaders, told Sputnik on Saturday.

    "The yellow vest movement is building its own political body, its representatives gather everywhere in France around one table, so we are forming a counterpower. This is the reality. What [French President Emmanuel] Macron claimed to do is creating 'horizontal politics' with the representatives coming from the people. We will get it going and it is a real opposition force," Chalencon stated.

    READ MORE: 'Yellow Vests' Protests Continue in Paris for Seven Weeks in a Row (VIDEO)

    The yellow vest "spokesman" said that he believed that Macron and his government were at the edge of a political collapse.

    "I think, that today Macron is at the edge of an implosion. His political party is imploding, there are deputies who leave the LREM [La Republique En Marche] party, LREM is imploding…We have almost two-month conflict and we ask Macron to change the policies. If he does not change the direction of his politics, he will fall," Chalencon argued.

    According to Chalencon, Macron and members of his government are no longer safe in the country and are able to appear on the streets only under police escort.

    "There are still numerous manifestations as before everywhere in France, Paris included. There was a massive protest action in Avignon, with people blocking the malls. The protest goes on… We are at the edge of a civil war. Politicians today have to take the responsibility," Chalencon indicated.

    The wave of the so-called yellow vest protests — named after the obligatory attribute of French drivers — started in mid-November. While the French government has scrapped its planned hike in fuel taxes, which is what initially sparked the protests, the "yellow vests" have evolved into a broader movement against government policies and rising living costs.

    The rallies are being held throughout France on Saturdays. Despite the fact that the latest mass actions saw fewer participants, the protests' organizers plan to proceed with further demonstrations.


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