France to strengthen sanctions on undeclared protests, PM Philippe says

France to strengthen sanctions on undeclared protests, PM Philippe says

France to strengthen sanctions on undeclared protests, PM Philippe says

Activists from a French protest movement encouraged supporters Wednesday to set off a bank run by emptying their accounts, while the government urged citizens to express their discontent in a national debate instead of weekly demonstrations disrupting the streets of Paris.

The images filmed on Saturday show a heavily built man in a black duffel coat square up to several police officers before knocking them down in a hail of punches and kicking them on the ground.

The punches occurred during a "yellow vest" protest in Paris last weekend.

Di Maio applauded the yellow vest's interest in direct democracy, offering to provide the yellow vests with some of the online tools the Movement employs to organize grassroots events on a local level and to choose its representatives - despite the yellow vests' lack of formal spokespeople.

The French government has since toughened its stance and said it would crack down harder on undeclared protests and violence on the fringes of demonstrations. "We need to keep fighting peacefully". "I reacted badly. Yes, I reacted badly", he said, adding he had seen the "repression" of the police towards protesters.

The suspect was quickly identified but remained on the loose until he turned himself in on Monday.

Christophe Dettinger, known as "The Gypsy From Massy" during his days in the ring, turned himself in to police on Monday after videos emerged of him assaulting shield-carrying officers during the demonstrations on Saturday.

"Even if Christophe Dettinger is not somebody very famous, we can say that a champion is standing by our side", wrote Yasin Aslan, a Facebook user.

In a video message, Nicolle said "we are going to get our bread back".

The protests have rocked France for nearly two months. Police counted about 3,500 protesters in Paris.

Officers fired tear gas to prevent protesters crossing the river and reaching the National Assembly.

Two months on, the "yellow vest" movement which has no clear leader, is still posing a stern challenge to Macron, who is struggling to defuse public anger and meet protesters' requests, despite a series of concessions he made last month, including higher minimum wages and tax breaks.

The Ifop poll of 1,014 people was carried out on January 3-4, before the latest marches last Saturday when rioters torched motorbikes and set barricades ablaze in Paris.

Following a ministerial council meeting held earlier in the day, Griveaux told reporters that the yellow vest movement was comprised both of "sincere" people, including women and retirees, and "insurgents", with some of them being "ultra-left" or "ultra-right".

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