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Scuffles in Paris during 'yellow vest' protest

Scuffles in Paris during ‘yellow vest’ protest

PARIS (AP) – The Latest on France protests (all times local):

12 p.m.

More scuffles have broken out in central Paris among “yellow vest” protesters and police, who fired tear gas to disperse a crowd trying to make their way through police lines.

The clashes broke out in a side street near the capital’s famed Champs-Elysees boulevard Saturday morning, as groups of protesters headed off the main avenue into smaller nearby roads, some of them with traffic still flowing. Riot police blocked off access to some streets, attempting to keep the protests in specific areas.

Saturday marks the fifth straight weekend of demonstrations by the “yellow vest” movement, which takes its name from the fluorescent safety vests French motorists carry in their vehicles. It emerged mid-November as a protest against fuel tax increases and morphed into an expression of rage against the government

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11:30 a.m.

A minor scuffle has broken out between protesters and police in Paris during demonstrations by the “yellow vest” movement, with police briefly using pepper spray to disperse a crowd.

The scuffle broke out on the Champs-Elysees boulevard in the French capital late Saturday morning. Thousands of people were gathering on the wide boulevard amid a heavy police presence after previous protests turned violent. The scuffle was quickly over, and protesters began marching toward the landmark Arc de Triomphe at the end of the avenue.

Saturday marks the fifth straight weekend of demonstrations by the “yellow vest” movement, which takes its name from the fluorescent safety vests French motorists carry in their vehicles. It emerged in mid-November as a protest against fuel tax increases and morphed into an expression of rage against the government.

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10:15 a.m.

Paris police say 21 people have been detained in the French capital before protests by the “yellow vests” movement.

Thousands of police and other members of the security forces have been deployed in Paris for the fifth straight weekend of demonstrations and the government has called for calm after previous protests turned violent.

The “yellow vest” movement, which takes its name from the fluorescent safety vests French motorists must all have in their vehicles, emerged in mid-November as a protest against fuel tax increases.

Paris police said 21 people were detained by mid-morning. Security forces in riot gear were positioned around central train stations and along the famed Champs-Elysees, where shops were closed and their windows boarded up in anticipation of the protests as hundreds of people began walking along the broad boulevard.

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9:20 a.m.

A strong police presence has deployed in Paris before planned demonstrations by the “yellow vest” protesters, with authorities repeating calls for calm after previous violent protests and rioting.

Security forces in riot gear are positioned around central train stations and along the famed Champs-Elysees boulevard, where shops are closed and boarded up in anticipation of the protests. Last weekend, groups of demonstrators smashed and looted stores and set up burning barricades in the streets.

There was a strong police presence outside the central Saint Lazare train station, where police in riot gear checked bags. More than 20 police vans and a water cannon truck idled nearby.

President Emanuel Macron on Friday called for calm during the demonstrations.

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