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Paris May Day protests: Police and demonstrators clash

May 2, 2019 5:11 am

French police have fired tear gas on masked protesters who joined large May Day demonstrations in Paris.

Traditionally a union-led day of action in the country, this year’s event brought both the “yellow-vest” movement and so-called “black blocks” of dark-clad protesters onto the streets.

Some smashed shop windows and threw projectiles at the more than 7,000 officers deployed.

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Police responded with tear gas and water cannon, and arrested 380 people.

About 38 people were wounded, including 14 officers – one of whom was hit in the head with a paving stone.

The clashes forced the head of the CGT union to temporarily flee the march, and the group said their leader had been tear-gassed.

Philippe Martinez told news outlet France Info that “police charged the CGT”, though other witnesses said the “black blocks” had attacked the union march.

AFP news agency says Mr Martinez planned to return.

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