BDuring protests against pension reform in France, for the third night in a row on Saturday, police and demonstrators clashed. Police across the country arrested 169 people who quarreled with officers. This was announced on Sunday morning by the Minister of the Interior, Gerald Darmanin, to the French TV channel BFMTV. Of these, 122 were taken into custody in Paris alone.
On Saturday, demonstrators in Paris set trash cans on fire and police fired tear gas. Protests also broke out in other cities across the country, including Nantes, Marseille and Bordeaux.
People are rejecting an increase in the retirement age from 62 to 64, which President Emmanuel Macron pushed through on Thursday, bypassing a parliamentary vote. A broad alliance of major French unions has announced further action to reverse growth. Over the past few weeks, hundreds of thousands of people have taken to the streets against these plans. On Friday, 61 people were temporarily arrested during protests.
A vote of no confidence could spell the end of the government
As a result of the protests, mountains of garbage are accumulating in the capital. In addition, oil refineries and railway workers were on strike. Macron justified raising the retirement age from 62 to 64 on the grounds that otherwise the pension system would collapse. Fearing defeat in parliament, his government pushed the plan through without a vote, citing an article of the constitution allowing it. Raising the retirement age is one of the most important projects of the President. On Monday, the government of Elizabeth Bourne faces removal from office by two votes of no confidence.
Observers said the bypass showed that Macron’s ability to organize majorities for reform projects had suffered. According to him, this should now affect future projects as well.
Source: Frantfurter Allgemeine