Fierce clashes erupt in Paris as Yellow Vests hit streets for 62nd consecutive weekend (VIDEO)

At least 59 people have been arrested in Paris after scuffles broke out between Yellow Vests and police on Saturday. The protests have gained new momentum fueled by a nationwide strike against the pension reform.

Thousands of anti-government protesters flooded the streets of the French capital, Paris, on Saturday, chanting slogans to berate the sweeping social security system reforms initiated by the pro-business government of French President Emmanuel Macron.

The march led by Yellow Vests protesters in downtown Paris was marred by violence, and saw police using batons and tear gas on activists, who, in turn, hurled flyers.

Videos posted on social media show officers in full riot gear beating up protesters as they lay on the ground. The footage prompted activists to accuse police of using disproportionate force to quell the unrest.  

Police said that they have made 59 arrests as of 8 p.m. local time, noting that officers had to “systematically intervene” to stop “abuses committed by violent groups.”

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Saturday's strike outside the Palais Garnier. © STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN / AFP
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Yellow Vests have been taking to the French streets every weekend since November 2018. While at one moment the demonstrators saw their numbers dwindling, an ongoing nation-wide strike against pension reforms which kicked off in December has reinvigorated the protest movement.

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