Friday, 14 December, 2018

Donald Trump throws his support behind Paris 'yellow vest' protests

Protesters in Brussels clashing with police today near European institutions. – EPA pic Protesters in Brussels clashing with police today near European institutions. – EPA pic
Laurie Berry | 08 December, 2018, 22:11

Macron's eco-cred took another hit this week when his government announced it would abandon his carbon-friendly fuel-tax hikes to appease Yellow Vest protesters, a move environmental activists considered a "retreat".

But the protests were far smaller than last week's demonstrations, as police sought to preempt any chaos by arresting protesters and confiscating risky objects before demonstrations began.

While scattered scuffles broke out Saturday around central Paris, the action seemed less violent overall at midday than at the same time a week ago, when crowds defaced the Arc de Triomphe, one of the city's most revered monuments, and rampaged in the surrounding high-end neighborhood.

Much of Paris looked like a ghost town, with museums, department stores closed on what should have been a festive pre-Christmas shopping day.

Blue armoured vehicles rumbled across cobblestone streets from the Arc de Triomphe across toward eastern Paris as scattered demonstrations spread around the city.

"At the national level, including Paris, we're at more than 700 detained with participation in the movement at 31,000 nationwide including 8,000 in Paris", he told France 2 television.

The "yellow vest" protests, named after the safety jackets worn by demonstrators, began on 17 November in opposition to rising fuel taxes, but have since grown into a wider movement against Emmanuel Macron in the biggest challenge of his presidency so far.

"These past three weeks have produced a monster that its creators no longer control", Interior Minister Castaner said on Friday, vowing "zero tolerance" toward those aiming to wreak further destruction.

Prized Paris monuments and normally bustling shopping meccas locked down and tens of thousands of police took position around France to face protesters angry at President Emmanuel Macron and France's high taxes.

"Social justice is needed for climate conditions to improve".

"But there's something not right here: if we demonstrate peacefully, the government ignores us".

ASSOCIATED PRESS A demonstrator wearing a yellow vest is covered in blood after getting in injured during a protest in Paris.

Nigel Farage said the violent protests that have broken out across France are a sign of the growing disconnect between the country's citizens and its elites. The leaderless group is united primarily in its sense that Macron and his government are out of touch.

SpaceX rocket still floating in Atlantic Ocean after botched ground landing
This mission is NASA's 16th mission of SpaceX, which is part of a long-term contract to deliver supplies in space. There was a problem with the grid fin hydraulic pump, he explained, so the rocket landed in the sea.

"We're asking him to meet us to negotiate on spending power, which is what underpins all this anger", Mr Cauchy said.

"I want clean air and clean water and have been making great strides in improving America's environment".

The cost of diesel has increased by 20 per cent in the past 12 months to an average of 1.49 euros per litre.

This was his third weekend of protesting in Paris.

Some top French officials said that description was not far off.

"The Paris Agreement isn't working out so well for Paris", Trump tweeted Saturday morning.

President Trump suggested the United States was "way ahead of the curve" in rejecting the supposedly anti-climate change accord, noting that his country - despite its refusal to sign it - is "the only major country where emissions went down past year!"

The renewed violence in Paris gave the impression of a government that is powerless against the uprising.

Some protesters Saturday attempted to block the Porte Maillot dual carriageway, which is a toll-free route into Paris.

Police posted a video on Twitter of officers tackling a protester and confiscating his unsafe material, which appeared to be primarily a tennis racket.

Four people have been killed in accidents since the unrest began.

Protesters also blocked roads, roundabouts and tollbooths elsewhere in France and offshoot movements have emerged in Belgium and the Netherlands.

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