Calm before further protests in France

Calm before further protests in France

| Saturday 18 March 2023

 (AP) — A spattering of protests were planned in France over the weekend against President Emmanuel Macron’s controversial pension reform, as garbage continued to reek in the streets of Paris and beyond amid a strike by refuse collectors.

An eerie calm, returned to Paris Saturday after two nights of thousands-strong protests across the French capital, with one flash point at the elegant Place de la Concorde where angry protesters tossed an effigy of Macron into a bonfire to cheers from the crowd. Police dispersed people with tear gas and water cannons and there were hundreds of arrests.

Protesters are trying to pressure lawmakers to bring down Macron’s government and doom an unpopular retirement age increase he’s trying to impose without a vote in the National Assembly.

Further protests were planned Saturday in Paris as well as in the cities of Marseille and Nantes, but they were expected to be smaller than in previous days

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