The Eiffel Tower in Paris is to close on Saturday amid fears of further street violence from “Yellow Vest” anti-government protests.
Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has announced that the government is ready to deploy at least eighty-nine thousands members of the security forces nationwide , including eight thousand in Paris, to counter inequality protests.
He said the “exceptional” security measures had been put in place because some people were “not here to protest but to smash”.
Philippe said the Gendarmerie would use about 10 armored vehicles to stop mayhem similar to what happened last week across the country, the first time since 2005 riots in Paris suburbs that such high-level measures are being considered.
Protesters from the “Yellow Vest” movement have been using social media to call for “act iv” a fourth weekend of protests.
The intense protest events, which degenerated into street clashes and vandalism throughout Paris over the weekend, broke out last month over the fuel taxes aimed at financing France’s anti-pollution measures.
The massive protests were initially triggered by the rising cost of fuel this year, and rapidly expanded into a wider revolt against government policies, which stands accused of pursuing policies that primarily impact low-income households in the European nation.
Many influential figures in France have reportedly been pressing President Emmanuel Macron to alleviate the popular anger after witnessing the urban battles in the country’s capital, when dozens of automobiles were burned and businesses attacked and looted.