Fires, tear gas highlight another round of Yellow Vests protests in Paris


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Dozens of black-hooded demonstrators threw rocks at police and some set fire to motor-cycles in the centre of French capital, according to Reuters TV footage.

Masked protesters hurled paving stones and flares.

Paris firefighters battled multiple small but impressive fires around the Place de la Republique.

Despite the destruction of Notre Dame dominating the news in France, a new round of nationwide yellow vest protests was planned for Saturday.

Police advance on protestors during a yellow vest demonstration in Paris, Saturday, April 20, 2019. "I got a call from Andre Finot, the spokesman for Notre Dame, who said there were bees flying in and out of the hives which means they are still alive!".

The protesters, who chanted, sang and played musical instruments as they marched, have said that the hundreds of millions of dollars in donations to rebuild Notre Dame is a glaring sign of the inequalities in the country.

Large portions of the Paris metro network were closed and about 60,000 police were deployed across France, authorities said.

Yellow vest protests grew violent on Saturday as firefighters battled several fires amid clouds of tear gas in eastern Paris.

Meanwhile, there was anger yesterday as thousands of Yellow Vest protesters took to the Paris streets and set fire to improvised barricades on the banks of the River Seine.

The protests started as demonstrations against a gas tax hike eventually morphed into a broader protest against the french government and economic injustice.

This Saturday's protests expected in Paris, Toulouse, Montpelier and Bordeaux had been scheduled to mark their dissatisfaction with Macron's nationwide listening-process, known as the "great debate", in which the government had promised to take on board voters' suggestions.

Firefighter spokesman Plus said there could have been "a smouldering fire inside the frame" of the Notre Dame roof that was fueled by the wind.

Many protesters were deeply saddened by the fire at a national monument.

Three beehives were housed at Notre Dame on a roof about 30 meters below the main roof where the fire spread.

Masked protesters and helmeted riot police have clashed repeatedly in Paris amid tensions on the edges of a yellow vest protest.

He will now unveil that package on Thursday, though many yellow jackets protesters have already made it clear they expect little.

Interior ministry figures put the number of demonstrators nationwide at 9,600 at 2 pm (1200 GMT), including 6,700 in the capital.

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