*On Saturday, protesters in Paris were heard shouting ‘Kill yourselves!’ at police
*Unions say police have seen 28 suicides this year so far, compared to 68 in 2018
*France’s interior minister Christophe Castaner labelled it a ‘disgrace’
With the number of suicides among police on the rise, Paris authorities are investigating yellow vest protesters who encouraged officers to kill themselves.
The largely peaceful demonstrations of the past five months – which demand more help for France’s beleaguered workers, retirees and students – have been noticeably infringed with radical protesters clashing with police.
On Saturday, protesters in the French capital were heard shouting ‘Kill yourselves!’ at police officers.
Police scuffle with protesters. On Saturday, reporters heard some protesters in Paris shouting ‘Kill yourselves!’ at police firing tear gas and rubber projectiles and charging the crowd to contain the violence at the 23rd weekend of yellow vest demonstrations
A protester throws a scooter onto a pile of burning motorbikes during a yellow vest demonstration
Officers were firing tear gas and rubber projectiles and charging the crowd to contain the violence at the 23rd weekend of yellow vest demonstrations.
Police unions denounced the protesters’ call as an unacceptable insult to the officers who have killed themselves and their suffering families.
France’s interior minister Christophe Castaner called it a ‘disgrace’ and pledged his support for police and their loved ones, who have been under extra strain as the yellow vest protests have sometimes turned violent.
The Paris prosecutor’s office said an investigation was opened on Sunday to find those who might be prosecuted for ‘group offence toward a person exercising public authority’.
Police scuffle with protesters. The Paris prosecutor’s office said an investigation was opened on Sunday to find those who might be prosecuted for ‘group offence toward a person exercising public authority’
Police scuffle with protestors during a yellow vest demonstration in Paris, Saturday, April 20, 2019. French yellow vest protesters are marching anew to remind the government that rebuilding the fire-ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral isn’t the only problem the nation needs to solve.
Police unions held silent protests on Friday after two officers killed themselves last week.
Unions say police ranks have seen 28 suicides so far this year, compared to 68 over all of 2018.
On another protest topic, the media rights group Reporters Without Borders and France’s National Journalists Union protested Sunday on behalf of journalists who were detained and roughed up by police during Saturday’s clashes.
The yellow vest movement, named after the high-visibility vests all French drivers must carry in their vehicles, started in November against a hike in fuel taxes.
It spread to become a broad movement against high taxes and Emmanuel Macron’s pro-business policies, and protesters see themselves as standing up for the poor while Mr Macron is seen as representing the rich.
The movement has been marred by protest violence and the extremist views of some yellow vest demonstrators.
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