Macron’s Offensive Backfire

Fire is seen near a Christmas market during a demonstration by the "yellow vests" movement at Boulevard Saint Germain in Paris, France, January 5, 2019.
Fire is seen near a Christmas market during a demonstration by the “yellow vests” movement at Boulevard Saint Germain in Paris, France, January 5, 2019.

PARIS (Reuters) – Emmanuel Macron intended to start the new year on the offensive against the ‘yellow vest’ protesters. Instead, the French president is reeling from more violent street demonstrations.

What began as a grassroots rebellion against diesel taxes and the high cost of living has morphed into something more perilous for Macron – an assault on his presidency and French institutions.

The anti-government protesters on Saturday used a forklift truck to force their way into a government ministry compound, torched cars near the Champs Elysees and in one violent skirmish on a bridge over the Seine punched and kicked riot police officers to the ground.

The French authorities’ struggle to maintain order during the weekend protests raises questions not just over policing tactics but also over how Macron responds, as he prepares to bring in stricter rules for unemployment benefits and cut thousands of public sector jobs.

On Sunday evening, Macron wrote on Twitter: “Once again, the Republic was attacked with extreme violence – its guardians, its representatives, its symbols.”

His administration had hardened its stance against the yellow vests after the protest movement appeared to have lost momentum over the Christmas holidays.

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See Also:

(1) Desperate Macron ‘plans to SACK police chief’ after Yellow Vest chaos

(2) France in Free Fall

(3) Donald Trump takes SHOCK swipe at the EU – ‘I WANT Europe to pay’

(4) Yellow vest protests: EU flag BURNED by pro-Brexit demonstrators in London

(5) Europe is a continent in crisis – where lo-vis people now wear high-vis jackets

(6) ‘Good times are OVER!’ Germany prepares for economic doom as Merkel ally issues WARNING

(7) Poland accuses Brussels of ‘turning blind eye’ on rule-breaker Macron

(8) Brexit DELAY – May pushes back final split from EU until December 2021

(9) Shock momentum behind no deal Brexit REVEALED as May’s deal CRUMBLES

(10) Fury at new plot to BLOCK EU exit – ‘Parliamentary WRECKING tactics!’

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