“After Macron’s push for pension plan, the French protests continue to persist.”

“Once more, French refinery workers, garbage collectors, and various others went on strike on Tuesday, protesting against President Emmanuel Macron’s controversial move to pass the retirement age bill from 62 to 64 without a parliamentary vote.”

President Macron’s action has triggered widespread anger across the nation. In Paris, the police reported 234 arrests on Tuesday, mostly for setting fire to garbage in the streets. Several small-scale demonstrations were also held in various cities throughout France, some of which turned violent on Monday night.

In Paris, small groups gathered and set fire to piles of trash, which had accumulated due to the ongoing 16-day strike by garbage collectors. Paris police chief Laurent Nunez attributed the violence to groups of up to 300 people who were quickly moving around the capital.

Nunez has ordered an internal investigation after a police officer was filmed punching a man who was walking backwards, causing him to fall to the ground.

The video has gone viral on French social media. Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne expressed her government’s support for the 400 police officers who have been injured in recent days, including 42 overnight.

Following the government’s success in surviving two no-confidence motions on Monday, President Macron has arranged a series of political meetings on Tuesday with the prime minister, parliamentary leaders, and lawmakers from his centrist coalition.

Macron, who has placed the pension plan at the forefront of his second term, will address the nation on Wednesday evening, marking the first time he will speak since the decision was made last week to use the government’s special constitutional power to push the bill through parliament. He is expected to support his government in his speech.

On Tuesday, while addressing the lower chamber of parliament, Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne pledged to continue working in the coming months to find the best solutions to address the French people’s concerns, including through compromises and working with lawmakers.

However, Mathilde Panot, a leftist lawmaker, warned Borne that she would ultimately have to give in to their demands.

Mathilde Panot further commented that Emmanuel Macron’s options are limited, and demanded that the pension bill be withdrawn or new legislative elections be held. Before it can become law, the bill must undergo a review by the Constitutional Council.

Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne has decided to expedite the process by referring the matter to the Council. Members of the opposition, including far-right lawmakers, have also submitted a request, and the leftists are expected to follow suit.

The Constitutional Council has the power to reject any articles in the measure that are not in line with the constitution. Opponents argue that the bill in its entirety should be rejected.

In the meantime, the Paris police authorities have announced that they have instructed garbage collectors to work and ensure a “minimum service.”

Since last week, 674 staff have been covered by these orders, allowing 206 garbage trucks to operate, according to a statement released by the authorities.

midst strikes at several refineries in western and southern France, oil shipments in the country have been partially disrupted.

The Energy Transition Ministry announced on Tuesday that some employees who are “essential to the functioning” of the Fos-sur-Mer oil depot in southern France would be required to return to work, which prompted some protesters to go to the site in support of the strikers.

As tensions escalated, protesters tried to block access to the site and some even resorted to throwing stones, leading police to use tear gas to disperse them.

The Fos-sur-Mer depot supplies fuel to gas stations in the southeast of France, which are currently experiencing the most significant shortages.

French government spokesperson Olivier Veran has warned that additional orders may be issued in the coming days for other sites.

In response, unions have called for new nationwide protests on Thursday to demand the government withdraw the retirement bill altogether.

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