French authorities may declare state of emergency over street riots

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© AP Photo/Thibault Camus

PARIS, December 2. /TASS/. The French authorities are considering all options of countering street riots in Paris, including declaring a state of emergency, French Government Spokesman Benjamin Griveaux told Europe 1 radio station on Sunday.

Several police trade unions have called on the government to impose a state of emergency to prevent violence next Saturday, the radio station reported. In comments to this report, Griveaux did not rule out this measure, saying that “all options are on the table.”

Mass protests, triggered by the rising fuel prices and taxes, flared up in France on November 17. The demonstrators are wearing yellow reflective vests for drivers. This and last Saturday the demonstrations turned violent. At least 133 people were injured in clashes with police in Paris, including nearly 23 of them police personnel, AFP reported, citing the city police. More than 400 people have been detained, and 378 of them are in custody.

France’s authorities announced that starting from January 1, 2019 petrol and diesel prices would rise by 3 euro cents and 6.5 euro cents, respectively. One of the factors behind the price hikes is the government’s move to introduce an environmental tax on greenhouse gas emissions. Prime Minister Eduard Philippe said the government planned to keep the new tax despite the protests.

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