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Yellow vests in clash with police

Marches: Yellow vest protesters wave RIC (Citizens’ Initiative Referendum) and French flags in 
Bordeaux PICTURE: AFP/GETTY

POLICE fired volleys of tear gas and arrested more than 250 protesters after yellow vest demonstrations returned to cities across France.

The anti-government movement — which emerged in 2018 to protest against fuel taxes and living costs — had been curbed by coronavirus lockdowns.

But on Saturday hundreds gathered for two marches in the capital with police stopping one after demonstrators left a designated route and set fire to waste bins and a car.

Officers used tear gas on small groups of roaming activists and worked hard to prevent protesters — who have demanded referendums — from reaching the Champs-Élysées, scene of riots last year.

Many of those held were carrying tools that could be used as weapons

The trouble came after France saw virus cases reach a daily high of nearly 10,000 on Thursday. Police called on demonstrators to respect Covid-19 measures in Paris, which is among France’s high-risk ‘red zones’.