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Stones thrown, tear gas fired at Paris labor reform protest
By Staff Writers, RT
RT.com
Tuesday, Sep 12, 2017


Police used tear gas against the protesters in the French capital who were pelting them with stones, an RT France reporter on the spot reports.
A rally against proposed labor law reforms in France has turned violent in Paris.

The massive, nation-wide rally was called by the General Confederation of Labor (CGT) union on September 12. CGT Secretary General Philippe Martinez said earlier that more than 180 demonstrations were being planned across the country.

The protest is the first rally of such magnitude since President Emmanuel Macron took office in May this year.

Reforming the country's strict labor laws has been one of the new president’s top priorities. In August, his government began the final round of talks with trade unions on liberalizing the country’s labor laws which the government hopes will reduce the 9.5 percent unemployment rate in France.

The policy of Macron’s predecessor, Francois Hollande, sparked months of violent protests in 2016. Hollande’s socialist government was trying to push through a less ambitious labor reform bill. The rallies often ended in confrontations between police and demonstrators.

Earlier Macron minced no words about the opponents of the labor reforms, calling them “lazy.”

“I will be absolutely determined and I will not yield anything, either to the lazy, the cynics or the extreme. And I ask you to have the same determination, each day,” Macron said, prompting furious responses from many politicians and members of the public.


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