Hundreds held after protests turn violent
Hundreds of people have been arrested after protesters angry about rising taxes clashed with French police for a third straight weekend.
Pockets of demonstrators built barricades in the middle of streets in central Paris, lit fires and threw rocks at officers yesterday.
Protesters, including some wearing black hoodies, piled up large planks and other material in the middle of a street near the Arc de Triomphe, before setting the debris on fire.
Police fired tear gas and used water cannons to try to push back the protesters.
Some demonstrators responded by throwing large rocks.
Others removed the barriers protecting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from the First World War to pose near its eternal flame and sing the national anthem. They were then dispersed by police.
French deputy interior minister Laurent Nunez said that 3,000 “troublemakers” were around the Champs-elysees, outside a perimeter secured by police.
Paris police said at least 205 people were arrested. Mr Nunez said 5,000 officers were deployed in Paris to try to contain the protests.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said some protesters have attacked police officers.
He said “some determined, equipped individuals” had gathered to “provoke” clashes with police.
At least 10 officers were said to have been slightly injured in the clashes.