Anger as French students join protests


Fears for their future prompted students to join the protests in France, their increasing anger sparking clashes with police. Demonstrations closed 261 high schools across the country, somewhat fewer than at the height of last Friday’s protests. There have been a number of arrests, including nine young people in the departement of Oise, and four in the town of Amiens.

French youth has a long history of taking to the streets to protest against what they see as state abuse of power, and little has changed.

One girl said: “Young people have the power to put pressure on the government. We do it for us and for others too, those who can’t afford to retire now. This is solidarity!”

But some critics say it’s unfair that a few hot heads can disrupt life for everyone else.

“It’s strange that young people think they can speak about what will happen 50 years from now,” said the mother of one student. “Only five or ten percent of students are blockading the entire school, and I think that’s sad for democracy.”

Outside Paris, police used tear gas against protesters in Mulhouse and Montbelliard in the east, while cars and a bus were set on fire in Lyon.

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