PARIS – Clashes between protesters and police broke out in Paris on Tuesday during a nationwide strike called by the country’s second largest workers’ union to oppose labor law reforms passed by the president.
According to the General Confederation of Labor (CGT), 60,000 people flooded the streets of the French capital to oppose recent work reforms passed by Emmanuel Macron which aim to make the labor market more flexible, although police dropped their own estimates down to some 24,000 demonstrators.
The mass march started in the iconic Parisian square Place de la Bastille and initially got underway peacefully before some 300 participants decided to riot, defacing street advertisements and several storefronts, prompting specially equipped riot police to move in and deploy teargas.
French TV reported that at least 3 people had been arrested in connection with the disturbances and that one protester sustained injuries and was hospitalized.
CGT called for a general strike and 180 individual marches across the country, with Paris taking the lead.
The strikes, which are not expected to significantly affect the private sector, were backed mainly by administrative, energy and public transport workers, particularly railways.