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Paris Under High Security for France’s ‘Heritage Weekend’

A protester holds a French flag as he takes part in a demonstration on Act 45 (the 45th consecutive national protest on Saturday) of the yellow vests movement in Paris, France, September 21, 2019. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

Paris police used tear gas Saturday to disperse anti-government demonstrators who are trying to revive the yellow vest movement in protest at perceived economic injustice and French President Emmanuel Macron’s government.

The French capital was placed under high security as a few hundred anti-government protesters started marching in the Paris streets.

Police in riot gear were moving quickly to disperse small crowds of protesters, using tear gas on and around the Champs-Elysees avenue, Saint-Lazare train station and Madeleine plaza, areas where protests have been banned this weekend.

Most demonstrators did not wear the fluorescent vests that gave the movement its name.

Paris police said at least 106 people were arrested and 1,249 security checks took place. Over 100 people received EUR 135 ($149) fines for demonstrating in a banned area.

Paris police said no damage was registered by midday.

Authorities have deployed more than 7,000 officers and banned protests in a large central area including the presidential palace, government and parliament buildings, the Champs-Elysees, the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral.

Several calls for demonstrations have been issued in the French capital by yellow vest supporters, environmental activists and a far-left workers union.

France’s annual heritage weekend, a very popular event with many cultural sites open to the public, is also taking place.

Also, thousands of environmental activists took to the streets of Paris to press President Emmanuel Macron, world leaders at the UN and multinational companies to reduce emissions faster.

Parisians and tourists were queuing to visit landmark and government buildings, including the Presidential palace and Mr. Macron’s office. The public could only access the Elysee after having pre-registered and passing security checks.

Stay tuned…

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