Motorist becomes 10th person to die during Yellow Vest riots

A motorist has been killed after his car collided with a lorry during a Yellow Vest riot in France, marking the tenth death linked to the protests since they began last month.

The 36-year-old man, who has not been identified publicly, died following the collision at a road block erected by protesters in Perpignan last night, in the south of the country.

Although it is understood that the victim was driving the car, there have been conflicting reports suggesting that he was stood with the demonstrators at a roundabout at the time of the crash. 

A local police spokesman said: ‘The victim was with a group of demonstrators when the accident happened just before midnight on Friday. An enquiry has been launched.’

A protester forces his way through a French riot police's line as violence erupted in Paris today as anti-government protesters took to the streets for the sixth Saturday in a row

A protester forces his way through a French riot police's line as violence erupted in Paris today as anti-government protesters took to the streets for the sixth Saturday in a row

A protester forces his way through a French riot police’s line as violence erupted in Paris today as anti-government protesters took to the streets for the sixth Saturday in a row

 A driver has been killed after a car collided with a lorry during a Yellow Vest riot in France , marking the tenth death since the protests began last month

 A driver has been killed after a car collided with a lorry during a Yellow Vest riot in France , marking the tenth death since the protests began last month

 A driver has been killed after a car collided with a lorry during a Yellow Vest riot in France , marking the tenth death since the protests began last month

Protestors wearing a yellow vest stand next to a burning barricade as they demonstrate against rising costs of living they blame on high taxes at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou, southern France

Protestors wearing a yellow vest stand next to a burning barricade as they demonstrate against rising costs of living they blame on high taxes at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou, southern France

Protestors wearing a yellow vest stand next to a burning barricade as they demonstrate against rising costs of living they blame on high taxes at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou, southern France

A protester shouts at the French riot police during a 'Yellow Vests' protest near La Madeleine in Paris, France

A protester shouts at the French riot police during a 'Yellow Vests' protest near La Madeleine in Paris, France

A protester shouts at the French riot police during a ‘Yellow Vests’ protest near La Madeleine in Paris, France

Near the border between France and Spain hundreds of protesters disrupted traffic as they gathered around an autoroute toll booth.

Police fired tear gas to disperse the yellow vests who retreated to a bridge, throwing objects on the road, a photographer at the scene said.

‘The autoroute is now being cleaned to allow traffic to resume normally,’ local authorities said.

France borders the Catalan region of Spain, and the French protesters were joined by dozens of Catalan pro-independence activists, also wearing yellow vests.

Protesters march through the centre of Paris for another weekend of demonstrations

Protesters march through the centre of Paris for another weekend of demonstrations

Protesters march through the centre of Paris for another weekend of demonstrations

Clashes erupt between the French riot police and demonstrators during a 'Yellow Vests' protest near La Madeleine

Clashes erupt between the French riot police and demonstrators during a 'Yellow Vests' protest near La Madeleine

Clashes erupt between the French riot police and demonstrators during a ‘Yellow Vests’ protest near La Madeleine

The separatists often block highways to protest against Madrid’s rejection of Catalonia’s independence referendum in October 2017.

Even though their goals are different, ‘this demonstration at the Boulou (toll booth) is symbolic, it shows the solidarity between the Spanish Catalans and the French,’ said Marcel, a 49-year-old winegrower.

Roadblocks by protesters were also reported on autoroutes near the border with Italy and at a bridge in Strasbourg near the German border. 

Most demonstrators were so-called Yellow Vest fuel price demonstrators, who are named after the high visibility jackets they wear

Most demonstrators were so-called Yellow Vest fuel price demonstrators, who are named after the high visibility jackets they wear

Most demonstrators were so-called Yellow Vest fuel price demonstrators, who are named after the high visibility jackets they wear

The Vests have been protesting since November 17 and, despite a range of concessions by President Emmanuel Macron

The Vests have been protesting since November 17 and, despite a range of concessions by President Emmanuel Macron

The Vests have been protesting since November 17 and, despite a range of concessions by President Emmanuel Macron

Violence erupted in Paris today as around 800 anti-government protesters took to the streets for the sixth Saturday in a row.

Most were so-called Yellow Vest fuel price demonstrators, who are named after the high visibility jackets they wear.  

David Delbruyere, 48, was one of about 20 protesters near the Arch of Triumph, the fifth time he has come to the French capital for a demonstration as he remains ‘disgusted’ with conditions in France.

Paris police said 65 people had been arrested, including a ‘yellow vest’ leader, Eric Drouet.

Authorities were also stationed at the Palace of Versailles outside Paris which has been closed to visitors over fears of unrest.

'Macron Resign', a crowd shouted today as they gathered at Montmartre, the tourist district overlooking Paris first thing this morning

'Macron Resign', a crowd shouted today as they gathered at Montmartre, the tourist district overlooking Paris first thing this morning

‘Macron Resign’, a crowd shouted today as they gathered at Montmartre, the tourist district overlooking Paris first thing this morning

There had been claimed that they would gather at the ancient palace of Versailles, to the west of the capital, but this turned out to be a diversion

There had been claimed that they would gather at the ancient palace of Versailles, to the west of the capital, but this turned out to be a diversion

There had been claimed that they would gather at the ancient palace of Versailles, to the west of the capital, but this turned out to be a diversion

A Facebook event organised by Drouet had listed thousands of people ‘interested’ in joining the Versailles demonstration but only around 60 showed up.

Further demonstrations of several hundred ‘yellow vests’ were reported in Lyon, Marseille, Rouen and Bordeaux.

And in Angouleme in southwest France, a puppet effigy of President Emmanuel Macron was decapitated Friday night during a ‘yellow vest’ protest, regional authorities said Saturday. 

The Vests have been protesting since November 17 and, despite a range of concessions by President Emmanuel Macron including scrapping green taxes of diesel and petrol, continue to call for him to step down.

‘Macron Resign’, a crowd shouted today as they gathered at Montmartre, the tourist district overlooking Paris first thing this morning.

A protester wearing a yellow vest scuffles with a policeman who is raising a baton at him

A protester wearing a yellow vest scuffles with a policeman who is raising a baton at him

A protester wearing a yellow vest scuffles with a policeman who is raising a baton at him

A Yellow vest protestor holds a firebox in the 9th district of Paris

A Yellow vest protestor holds a firebox in the 9th district of Paris

A Yellow vest protestor holds a firebox in the 9th district of Paris

'Gilets jaunes' protesters wearing scary rabbit masks march through the centre of Paris

'Gilets jaunes' protesters wearing scary rabbit masks march through the centre of Paris

‘Gilets jaunes’ protesters wearing scary rabbit masks march through the centre of Paris

There had been claimed that they would gather at the ancient palace of Versailles, to the west of the capital, but this turned out to be a diversion.

‘Our protests have been hugely successful in Paris itself, and that’s why we’re back here,’ said Jean Caron, a 52-year-old from Brittany.

‘What everybody now realises is that the government cannot control us, and that’s why we will continue until Macron resigns.’

Yellow vest protestors hold a banner in front of the Noailles police station in Marseille

Yellow vest protestors hold a banner in front of the Noailles police station in Marseille

Yellow vest protestors hold a banner in front of the Noailles police station in Marseille

A protestor wearing a Yellow Vest (Gilet Jaune) rides a bicycle with a French flag in Marseille, southern France

A protestor wearing a Yellow Vest (Gilet Jaune) rides a bicycle with a French flag in Marseille, southern France

A protestor wearing a Yellow Vest (Gilet Jaune) rides a bicycle with a French flag in Marseille, southern France

A protester wears an Anonymous mask and a yellow vest during the demonstration

A protester wears an Anonymous mask and a yellow vest during the demonstration

A protester wears an Anonymous mask and a yellow vest during the demonstration

Despite such strong views, numbers were down on earlier demonstrations, with around 600 taking part in a march from Montmartre into the city.

Last Saturday there were almost 170 arrests for public order offences across the city, while last month some 700 were held in custody on a single day.

‘The situation is tense, and we are monitoring the crowds constantly,’ said a Paris police spokesman said today, adding that there had been no arrests by lunchtime.

A Yellow Vest protestor stands on a sign reading Arc de Triomphe in Paris

A Yellow Vest protestor stands on a sign reading Arc de Triomphe in Paris

A Yellow Vest protestor stands on a sign reading Arc de Triomphe in Paris

French activist Jean-Baptiste Redde, aka Voltuan, (C) holds a sign

French activist Jean-Baptiste Redde, aka Voltuan, (C) holds a sign

French activist Jean-Baptiste Redde, aka Voltuan, (C) holds a sign

More protesters gather in the streets wearing their neon jackets in Paris

More protesters gather in the streets wearing their neon jackets in Paris

More protesters gather in the streets wearing their neon jackets in Paris

Prosters wearing a yellow vest demonstrate and block the road in Ventimiglia near the French-Italian border

Prosters wearing a yellow vest demonstrate and block the road in Ventimiglia near the French-Italian border

Prosters wearing a yellow vest demonstrate and block the road in Ventimiglia near the French-Italian border

High-end shops including luxury fashion boutiques were all boarded up, along with banks and post offices.

Mounted police, water cannons, and 14 armoured vehicles capable of spreading high-intensity gas were all on standby as part of the security operation.

They have failed to prevent widespread disorder over the past few weekends, with the worst violence normally coming at nightfall.

Protestors wearing Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) face police officers as they demonstrate at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou

Protestors wearing Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) face police officers as they demonstrate at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou

Protestors wearing Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) face police officers as they demonstrate at the A9 highway toll of Le Boulou

Police officers protect the Noailles police station in Marseille, southern France

Police officers protect the Noailles police station in Marseille, southern France

Police officers protect the Noailles police station in Marseille, southern France

Yellow Vest protestors walk in Paris, on December 22, 2018, as demonstrations are planned in several regions of France

Yellow Vest protestors walk in Paris, on December 22, 2018, as demonstrations are planned in several regions of France

Yellow Vest protestors walk in Paris, on December 22, 2018, as demonstrations are planned in several regions of France

The Vests have been joined by extremists from the far Right and the ultra-Left, as well as anarchists intent on causing as much damage as possible.

Crisis-ridden Mr Macron has not only climbed down on imposing green surcharges, but increased the national minimum wage by seven per sent, and scrapped tax on bonuses.

But the Yellow Vests said their protests would continue indefinitely as they campaign for even more concessions.

The independent Mr Macron, leader of the Republic On The Move party, won the French presidential election in a landslide in 2017, but he is now dubbed the ‘President of the Rich’ with polls showing his popularity rating down to just 18 per cent. 

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