French "Yellow Vests" Clash With Police in Nantes

Yellow vests protesters

About 200 "yellow vests" demonstrators protested in the western French city of Nantes on Saturday, Feb. 9, for what the movement has dubbed "Act 13" of their weekly demonstrations, which have shaken President Emmanuel Macron's authority.

In a graphic video of the aftermath, French paramedics are seen gathered around the injured protester at the National Assembly gates, providing emergency medical treatment and preventing onlookers from getting too close.

Protests descended into violence for the 13th consecutive weekend.

Earlier on Saturday, activists in Latvia staged a picket in front of the French embassy in Riga, the capital of the small Baltic EU country, to support the yellow vest movement and urge Latvians to demand higher living standards.

Police used batons and fired tear gas in Paris to disperse demonstrators, some of whom threw debris at riot police hunkered down.

Royer said the victim was a yellow jacket photographer "taking photos of people trying to break down the barriers protecting the entrance to the National Assembly", at around midday. "He wanted to bat it away so it didn't explode by his leg and it went off when he touched it".

Anarchists and supporters of extremist groups on the far-Right and far-Left often join the "yellow vest" protests, along with troublemakers known as "casseurs" intent on causing as much damage as possible.

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"We put him to one side and called the street medics". By 2pm officers had arrested 10 people, they added.

Paris police said the man had lost four fingers.

"This is the second severe injury in as many weeks and will likely inflame tensions between the government and the yellow vest movement", Beardsley reported.

Thousands of protesters turned out in other parts of France, including the port cities of Marseille and Montpellier and also in Bordeaux and Toulouse in the southwest.

But last week's official estimates were disputed both by march organisers and contradicted by an independent estimate carried out for news media, which gave a higher estimate. Recent polls show Macron's approval ratings rising.

The protests have brought hundreds of thousands of people out onto the streets all over France.

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