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Riot police fire tear gas and water cannons in Paris as thousands protest against health pass plan

French anti-riot police fired teargas and water canons on Saturday as clashes broke out during protests in central Paris against a proposed vaccine passport.

The bill would require everyone to have a special virus pass to enter restaurants and other venues and make. Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory for all health care workers. 

Legislators in France‘s Senate were debating the bill on Saturday after the lower house of parliament approved it on Friday.

Footage posted online showed riot police clashing with protesters and firing tear gas into the crowd. 

Another video showed police trying to push back demonstrators near the capital’s Gare Saint-Lazare railway station after the protesters pushed over a motorbike carrying several officers. 

At another protest called by far-right politicians in west Paris, demonstrators opposed to anti-virus measures carried banners reading ‘Stop the dictatorship’. 

Protesters hold French flags as they are hit by the spray of a water canon during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination of certain workers and the obligatory use of a health pass

Protesters clashed with riot police during demonstrations against a planned health pass on Saturday as legislators in France 's Senate were debating the bill

Protesters clashed with riot police during demonstrations against a planned health pass on Saturday as legislators in France ‘s Senate were debating the bill

French police detain protesters during a demonstration against the proposed vaccine passport in Nantes on Saturday

French police detain protesters during a demonstration against the proposed vaccine passport in Nantes on Saturday  

French police officers detain two protestors during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass in Nantes, western France

French police officers detain two protestors during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass in Nantes, western France

French anti-riot police fired teargas on Saturday as clashes broke out during protests in central Paris against a proposed vaccine passport

French anti-riot police fired teargas on Saturday as clashes broke out during protests in central Paris against a proposed vaccine passport

Footage and images posted online showed riot police clashing with protesters and firing tear gas into the crowd on Saturday

Footage and images posted online showed riot police clashing with protesters and firing tear gas into the crowd on Saturday

A protester flees after riot police fired tear gas during a demonstration against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

A protester flees after riot police fired tear gas during a demonstration against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

French riot mobile gendarmes clash with protesters during a demonstration against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

French riot mobile gendarmes clash with protesters during a demonstration against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

A protestor tied up in rope shows a placard reading 'vaccines: fake freedom' during a mass demonstration in Paris on Saturday

A protestor tied up in rope shows a placard reading ‘vaccines: fake freedom’ during a mass demonstration in Paris on Saturday

French police detain a protester during a demonstration against plans for compulsory vaccines for health workers in Paris on Saturday

French police detain a protester during a demonstration against plans for compulsory vaccines for health workers in Paris on Saturday

Protesters built up barricades with fences they took from a construction site during a demonstration against the proposed vaccination pass and mandatory jabs for health workers

Protesters built up barricades with fences they took from a construction site during a demonstration against the proposed vaccination pass and mandatory jabs for health workers

Riot police with shields and protective gear were deployed in Toulouse on Saturday as thousands took to the streets to demonstrate against a planned health pass

Riot police with shields and protective gear were deployed in Toulouse on Saturday as thousands took to the streets to demonstrate against a planned health pass

Thousands of demonstrators gathered at Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower in Paris on Saturday to protest against a proposed vaccine passport

Thousands of demonstrators gathered at Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower in Paris on Saturday to protest against a proposed vaccine passport

Protesters attend a demonstration called by the French nationalist party 'Les Patriotes' against pandemic restrictions

Protesters attend a demonstration called by the French nationalist party ‘Les Patriotes’ against pandemic restrictions

Thousands of protesters marched through Paris towards the Place Trocadero on Saturday, demonstrating against a proposed vaccine pass

Thousands of protesters marched through Paris towards the Place Trocadero on Saturday, demonstrating against a proposed vaccine pass

It comes as as virus infections are spiking and hospitalisations are rising anew across France. 

The government is trying to speed up vaccinations to protect vulnerable populations and hospitals, and avoid new lockdowns.

Most French adults are fully vaccinated and polls indicate a majority of French people support the new measures. But not everyone.

Protesters chanting ‘Liberty! Liberty!’ gathered at Bastille plaza and marched through eastern Paris in one of several demonstrations around France on Saturday. 

Thousands also joined a gathering across the Seine River from the Eiffel Tower organised by a former top official in Marine Le Pen’s anti-immigration party.

Protests also took place in cities across France including Marseille, Montpellier, Nantes and Toulouse. 

Police fired tear gas at protesters, some wearing yellow vests, during demonstrations against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

Police fired tear gas at protesters, some wearing yellow vests, during demonstrations against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday 

Clashes broke out between riot police and demonstrators during protests against a planned vaccine pass as it was debated by legislators in the French senate on Saturday

Clashes broke out between riot police and demonstrators during protests against a planned vaccine pass as it was debated by legislators in the French senate on Saturday 

Riot police run on a street during clashes on the sidelines of a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass

Riot police run on a street during clashes on the sidelines of a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass

French Gendarmes and police officers stand ready for demonstrations against plans for a health pass and compulsory vaccination for certain workers

French Gendarmes and police officers stand ready for demonstrations against plans for a health pass and compulsory vaccination for certain workers

Police fired tear gas at protesters, some wearing yellow vests, during demonstrations against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

Police fired tear gas at protesters, some wearing yellow vests, during demonstrations against a proposed health pass in Paris on Saturday

Clashes broke out between riot police and demonstrators during protests against a planned vaccine pass as it was debated by legislators in the French senate on Saturday

Clashes broke out between riot police and demonstrators during protests against a planned vaccine pass as it was debated by legislators in the French senate on Saturday

Riot police walk alongside the side of protesters as they march through France against a proposed compulsory health pass

Riot police walk alongside the side of protesters as they march through France against a proposed compulsory health pass

Footage posted online showed police trying to push back demonstrators

The video showed demonstrators push over a motorbike carrying several officers

Footage posted online showed police trying to push back demonstrators near the capital’s Gare Saint-Lazare railway station after the protesters pushed over a motorbike carrying several officers

Protesters were pushed back by riot police during clashes during a demonstration against a proposed health pass

Protesters were pushed back by riot police during clashes during a demonstration against a proposed health pass

While most protesters were calm, tensions erupted on the margins of the Bastille march. Riot police sprayed tear gas on marchers after someone threw a chair at an officer. Other projectiles could also be seen in a video of the incident.

Many marchers focused their anger on a French ‘health pass’ that is required to enter museums, movie theatres and tourist sites. 

The bill under debate would expand the pass requirement to all restaurants and bars in France and some other venues. 

To get the pass, people need to be fully vaccinated, have a recent negative test or have proof they recently recovered from the virus. 

Lawmakers have debated the measure amid divisions over how far to go in imposing health passes or mandatory vaccinations. 

Protesters chanting 'Liberty! Liberty!' gathered at Bastille plaza and marched through eastern Paris in one of several demonstrations around France on Saturday

Protesters chanting ‘Liberty! Liberty!’ gathered at Bastille plaza and marched through eastern Paris in one of several demonstrations around France on Saturday

Thousands of protesters gathered at Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower during a demonstration against the Covid-19 health pass on Saturday

Thousands of protesters gathered at Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower during a demonstration against the Covid-19 health pass on Saturday

Thousands also joined a gathering across the Seine River from the Eiffel Tower organised by a former top official in Marine Le Pen's anti-immigration party

Thousands also joined a gathering across the Seine River from the Eiffel Tower organised by a former top official in Marine Le Pen’s anti-immigration party

Protesters at the Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower held placards reading 'You shall not Pass' at a demonstration against a proposed compulsory health pass

Protesters at the Place Trocadero near the Eiffel Tower held placards reading ‘You shall not Pass’ at a demonstration against a proposed compulsory health pass

A protester carries a banner that reads 'Support to health workers... and not only at 8pm' during a demonstration against proposed compulsory health pass

A protester carries a banner that reads ‘Support to health workers… and not only at 8pm’ during a demonstration against proposed compulsory health pass

A protester carries a placard reading 'Put your pass in your ass Mac...!' during a demonstration against a planned health pass

A protester carries a placard reading ‘Put your pass in your ass Mac…!’ during a demonstration against a planned health pass 

A protester holds a sign reading 'Anti health pass' during a protest against the vaccination and the compulsory health pass in Paris on Saturday

A protester holds a sign reading ‘Anti health pass’ during a protest against the vaccination and the compulsory health pass in Paris on Saturday

A mask bearing French President Emmanuel Macron and reading "lier, manipulator" is displayed on a stick during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pas

A mask bearing French President Emmanuel Macron and reading ‘lier, manipulator’ is displayed on a stick during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pas

Protesters carry the French flag during a protest against proposed compulsory vaccine passes in Paris on Saturday

Protesters carry the French flag during a protest against proposed compulsory vaccine passes in Paris on Saturday 

Some protesters wore masks as they attended mass demonstrations against plans for mandatory vaccinations for certain workers and a health pass

Some protesters wore masks as they attended mass demonstrations against plans for mandatory vaccinations for certain workers and a health pass

Last weekend, more than 100,000 people protested around France against the measures. They included far-right politicians and activists as well as others angry at President Emmanuel Macron for various reasons.

Remaining members of France’s yellow vest movement, largely from political extremes, are using the virus bill to try to rekindle its flame. 

The movement started in 2018 as a broad uprising against perceived economic injustice and led to months of protests marked by violence between demonstrators and police, but subsided after the French government addressed many of the protesters’ concerns

Protesters took place across the country, including in Annecy, eastern France, against a proposed health pass

Protesters took place across the country, including in Annecy, eastern France, against a proposed health pass

A protestor holds a placard reading 'France is not a P4 lab, Resistance' during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass in Annecy, eastern France, on Saturday

A protestor holds a placard reading ‘France is not a P4 lab, Resistance’ during a demonstration against the compulsory vaccination for certain workers and the mandatory use of the health pass in Annecy, eastern France, on Saturday


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