French police attack protesters after Macron's plan approved

TEHRAN, Apr. 16 (MNA) – French police forces have violently attacked protesters during rallies in Rennes, a day after French President Emmanuel Macron signed into law a controversial bill to raise the country’s retirement age by two years.

The police went in for a spree of violent crackdowns over demonstrators on Saturday, as they were seen firing water cannons, tear gas shells, and even forcibly restraining and detaining people, just to disperse the gathered public.

Meanwhile, the demonstrators stood behind makeshift shields of umbrellas and wooden boards in resistance to the piercing water cannons, an action that clearly manifested towards not backing from their stance.

"Here is a woman who fell and is being dragged. There is a man who comes to defend her and here is how he is thanked… You (the authorities) should be ashamed of yourself… Use of proportional violence, is that right?,” an unnamed protester was quoted as saying.

Earlier during the day, large numbers of protesters marched through the city center in a demonstration called for by local collectives and trade unions.

"The best way to frame the order of the day, it's the retreat of the reform. It's the definitive and total retreat of a villain project which is a nationwide insult toward the workers,” said a representative of the Force Ouvriere union.

“We hold in our hearts, our guts, and our neurons another future, one of equality, fraternity, of universal concord based on social and economic justice. That's what we are doing today," he added.

Protests have been going on since January and escalated after the government pushed through the changes without a vote in the National Assembly.

Following months of nationwide protests regarding the deeply unpopular plan to raise the state pension age, Macron on Saturday signed the bill into law, infuriating unions that called for demonstrations to continue.

Due to be implemented on September 1, the new law will push up the age for drawing a state pension from the current 62 to 64.


News Code 199547


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