Clashes erupted between dozens of protesters and police in Paris on Saturday, the 23rd consecutive Saturday of the yellow jackets, after authorities warned of the return of rioters to the French capital to provoke a new wave of violence.
Reuters television footage showed dozens of masked protesters throwing rocks at police in central Paris, some setting fire to motorcycles in the center of the capital. They also set fire to garbage cans.
Police responded with tear gas and stun grenades. Some police officers also marched towards the demonstrators to control the crowd and push protesters to the square of the Republic where they were allowed to demonstrate.
The Paris prosecutor’s office announced the arrest of 110 people by 1300 GMT.
A number of demonstrators clearly pointed to the catastrophic fire that broke out in the Notre Dame Cathedral on Monday, which caused dismay and prompted wealthy families and companies to pledge about 1 billion euros ($ 1.12 billion) for restoration.
“Millions for Notre Dame, what about us, the poor?” “Everything for Notre Dame and nothing for the poor“He said.
The city is on the alert after Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said internal intelligence services had told him the rioters could return to a vandalism campaign in Paris, Toulouse, Montpellier and Bordeaux in a repeat of violent protests on March 16.
Authorities said large parts of the Paris metro network had been closed and about 60,000 police had been deployed across France.
President Emmanuel Macaron was due to unveil policies on Monday to calm the popular protest movement, but the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral forced him to cancel the speech he was to deliver.
These policies are due to be announced on Thursday.