French police use tear gas to disperse protesters against pension reform in Paris


French police used tear gas to disperse some 4,000 protesters that expressed their discontent over the pension reform and the forced passage of the pension reform bill by the government.

For the second night on Friday, Place de la Concorde (Concorde Square), facing the National Assembly across the river Seine, became the place for protesters to express their anger over the government’s forced passage of the pension reform bill that used a special constitutional power, Xinhua news agency reported.

In the footage broadcast on television, clashes broke out between the police and some protesters. An effigy of French President Emmanuel Macron was also shown burnt by protesters.

On Thursday evening, spontaneous protests turned violent across France. According to French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin, some 10,000 people gathered at Place de la Concorde, while 52,000 participated in demonstrations organized in 24 other cities across France.

French police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse people at Place de la Concorde and arrested more than 200.

More public service sectors, including energy, railway, and aviation, announced on Friday to extend their strikes following the use of the special constitutional power by Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne to force passage of the pension reform bill.

Over 10,000 tons of garbage has piled up in the streets of Paris due to the municipal sanitation workers’ strike against the government’s controversial pension reform bill, the City Hall said on Friday.

Borne on Thursday activated an article of the country’s Constitution that allows the government to force passage of the controversial pension reform bill without a vote at the National Assembly.

According to Paragraph 3 of Article 49 of the French Constitution, the prime minister may, after consulting with the Council of Ministers, impose the adoption of a bill by the National Assembly without a vote. The only way for the National Assembly to veto this is to pass a no-confidence motion against the government.

Two no-confidence motions have been filed by Friday afternoon against the French government.

Should any of the motions be endorsed by an absolute majority – 289 votes in favor – Borne would have to submit to Macron the resignation of her government.


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