Paris, Dec 5 (efe-epa).- Protests against the French government’s proposed security law continued on Saturday in nearly 90 cities across the country – with clashes breaking out at the march in Paris – despite the fact that the government said it intended to reform the most controversial aspects of the legislation.
The demonstrations were held alongside other rallies called by labor unions against the growing job insecurity because of the pandemic and related restrictions.
Heavy security measures were deployed, after some demonstrations last Saturday ended with riots and confrontations between more radical protesters and police.
Clashes again broke out at Saturday’s Paris demonstration with at least 22 people arrested, according to the French Minister of the Interior, Gérarld Darmanin.
The riots took place in the front of the demonstration, where cars were set alight, while protesters erected barricades and vandalized several shop windows.
The police used tear gas after demonstrators targeted them with projectiles.
The protesters say the government’s announcement to withdraw article 24 of its law, which would have banned the recording and dissemination of images of security personnel, does not go far enough, considering the proposed law an attack on freedom of the press and of expression.
The government announced on Wednesday that this article would be totally revised and the president Emmanuel Macron said Friday that the new law will not ban recording and sharing images of police and gendarmes.
But the conveners of the demonstration want the total withdrawal of the legislation.
The demonstrations took place against a backdrop of growing criticism of Macron for what is considered an attack on fundamental freedoms, something that he denied in an interview with the online media Brut on Friday.