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AFP
February 11, 2019

Violent protests continue in France

Top Story

AFP
February 11, 2019

PARIS: A "yellow vest" demonstrator lost his hand during clashes with police outside the main parliament building in Paris on Saturday, witnesses told AFP, during a 13th weekend of anti-government protests across France.

Despite a drop in numbers from the massive turnouts of the first demonstrations in November, tens of thousands still turned out in cities across the country to protest against French President Emmanuel Macron’s policies.

Clashes broke out outside the National Assembly building in Paris after a march from the Champs-Elysees avenue arrived there. While many demonstrators marched peacefully, some masked activists tried to break down barriers outside the parliament while others urinated nearby. Masked men threw projectiles at police, who responded with tear gas and stun grenades.

As the march continued, vandals burned rubbish bins as well as cars -- mainly luxury models -- vandalising bus shelters, cash machines and shop windows along the route.

One of the torched cars belonged to Sentinelle, France’s anti-terrorism unit. Interior Minister Christophe Castaner expressed his "indignation and disgust" in a tweet.

A man was being held for questioning over the blaze, Paris prosecutors said. Volunteer medics at the National Assembly told AFP that a man had had his hand ripped off during the clashes between police and protesters.

One witness who filmed the incident, 21-year-old Cyprien Royer, said the victim was a yellow jacket photographer taking pictures of people trying to break down the barriers protecting the entrance to the National Assembly.

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