French youths clash with police as turnout against labor bill wanes

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 05, 2016 3:34 PM

PARIS (Reuters) - Young protesters clashed with police in Paris and across France on Tuesday on the sidelines of marches against plans to loosen the country's protective labor laws, although the turnout was lower than during previous protests.

About 23,800 people took part in the marches across France, according to the Interior Ministry, well down from the 390,000 seen during the previous day of protest on March 31. Organizers did not provide an estimate for the turnout.

Police said some 150 people were arrested during a march in central Paris and 27 during other marches in other parts of France.

Reuters TV footage showed hooded youths throwing stones and eggs at police, who responded with tear gas.

At issue is a proposed overhaul of France's labor code, a set of regulations that company bosses say deters recruitment. Critics say the reforms, which parliament began debating on Tuesday, will worsen working conditions and cause job losses.

(Reporting by Michel Rose; Editing by Mark Heinrich)