Life in France is at a standstill due to Yellow Vest protesters. They have raised their voices against rising living costs, and this has led to a lockdown of portions of Paris. The administration has closed the doors to major tourist attractions, like the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre. Many of the shops have boarded up and business along the Champs-Elysees is also affected. Protests entered the fourth week and Paris deputy mayor Emmanuel Gregoire has admitted to a section of the media that the damage “was more widespread than the previous week.”

Sky News reports the unrest has spread to cities other than Paris and the protesters, in their distinctive yellow safety jackets, have let loose destruction all around.

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The authorities had to deploy armored vehicles and thousands of police to control the crowds. They resorted to tear gas and water cannons. Hundreds of Yellow Vest protesters were arrested across the country.

The unrest has affected tourism

Paris is a favorite tourist destination and the rampage of Yellow Vest protesters has forced visitors to remain indoors. The Eiffel Tower and the Louvre are usually major tourist attractions in the capital. Shops have downed shutters and many have boarded up, which is not desirable during the approaching Christmas season.

The protestors have broken barricades in many places and the nature of the protest is becoming more violent. Visitors who come to enjoy their vacations do not like to see tear gas canisters and remnants of looting littering the streets. They want to move around freely, shop, and not remain behind closed doors.

The Yellow Vest protests began in mid-November and four people have lost their lives. President Emmanuel Macron has to respond to grievances of the people.

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A spokesman of the government indicated that the president could “make major announcements in the coming week.”

Bad time for tourists

According to Standard UK, police have arrested hundreds of Yellow Vest protestors across France. They have attacked symbols of liberty, equality, and fraternity. Police blocked crowds of protesters with shields as they tried to march down one of the most important streets toward the Elysee Palace. That led some of them to use alternate routes to go beyond the barricades and the police used tear gas.

The capital went into lockdown, blocking traffic on many roads and some areas in Paris resembled a ghost town with boards on windows to conceal Christmas decorations. The bustling activities one normally associates with pre-Christmas shopping were not visible.

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