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Tags: freedom convoy | paris | tear gas | covid restrictions

Police Fire Tear Gas as Anti-Restrictions Freedom Convoy Enters Paris

Police Fire Tear Gas as Anti-Restrictions Freedom Convoy Enters Paris

Inspired by Canadian protests, French freedom convoys (Convoi de la Liberte) gathered in several cities of France on February 11 to converge on Paris with their own vehicles to protest against coronavirus restrictions. (Alexis Coulon/Abaca/Sipa via AP Images)

Saturday, 12 February 2022 09:11 AM EST

French police fired tear gas at demonstrators on the Champs-Élysées Avenue in Paris on Saturday shortly after a Freedom Convoy protesting against COVID-19 restrictions made it into the capital.

Cars carrying protesters managed to get through police checkpoints in central Paris to snarl traffic around the Arc de Triomphe monument.

Inspired by horn-blaring Freedom Convoy demonstrations in Canada, the motorists waved French flags and honked in defiance of a police order not to enter the city.

Police told protesters to move on as some climbed on their cars in the middle of the roundabout at the top of the Champs Elysees.

Earlier police said they had stopped 500 vehicles that were trying to get into Paris and nearly 300 tickets were handed out to their occupants by mid-morning, police said.

Less than two months from a presidential election, President Emmanuel Macron's government is eager to keep protests from spiraling into large-scale demonstrations like the anti-government Yellow Vest protests of 2018.

Separately police also said they had arrested five protesters in southern Paris in possession of slingshots, hammers, knives and gas masks.

Police had mobilized more than 7,000 officers, set up checkpoints and deployed armored personnel carriers and water cannon trucks in preparation for the protests.

Canadian truckers protesting a vaccine mandate for trans-border traffic have paralyzed parts of the Ottawa capital since late January and blocked U.S.-Canada crossing points.

The French protests are against rules requiring a vaccine pass to enter many public places and come after months of regular demonstrations against the pass in Paris and other cities.

The Yellow Vest movement, which began as a protest against fuel taxes, grew into a broader revolt that saw some of the worst street violence in decades and tested Macron's authority.

Police have allowed two street marches by anti-vaccine and Yellow Vest demonstrators to go ahead in Paris on Saturday afternoon.

© 2024 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


GlobalTalk
French police fired tear gas at demonstrators on the Champs-Élysées Avenue in Paris on Saturday shortly after a Freedom Convoy protesting against COVID-19 restrictions made it into the capital.Cars carrying protesters managed to get through police checkpoints in central ...
freedom convoy, paris, tear gas, covid restrictions
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2022-11-12
Saturday, 12 February 2022 09:11 AM
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