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Chaos in France, violent protests against the pension reform continue
France's security forces clashed with protesters again on Saturday after they tried to stop the construction of a reservoir for the agricultural industry in the southwest of the country.
Violent scenes between protesters and law enforcement in Saite-Soline, western France, followed days of violent nationwide protests over pension reform by French President Emmanuel Macron.
At least 6,000 people took part in the March 25 protest, local authorities said, while organizers said there were about 25,000 demonstrators.
More than 3,000 members of the security forces were deployed and authorities said that "at least 1,000" violent protesters, including some from Italy, were participating in the protest. The site where the water tank is being built was cordoned off by the police, but clashes soon broke out between the police and the protesters.
Protesters threw hard objects and improvised explosive devices at police, while law enforcement responded with tear gas and water cannons.
"While the state is standing up to protect pensioners, we will also stand up to protect water," said one of the organizers. The motto of the protest was "We don't want reservation, thank you".
The police said that they arrested 11 people, who were found with cold weapons, but also explosive devices.
In France, the protest movement against the pension reform has turned into the biggest internal crisis of Macron's second term, as there are daily clashes on the streets of Paris and other French cities between police and protesters./REL