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Videos: French demonstrators & police clash as protests turn to riots

Riot police and demonstrators have clashed in France amid the ongoing general strike by labor unions against proposed pension reforms.

Reports from across France during the day spoke of more violence on the sidelines of the protests, including the smashing of shop windows and security cameras and setting fire to bicycles and effigies.

Huge crowds turned out on Thursday to protest against the proposal by President Emmanuel Macron’s government to reform the French pension system.

The CGT union said around 1.5 million people marched in support of the protest, while the interior ministry estimates spoke of 700,000.

Either way, the protest easily dwarfed the weekly ‘Yellow Vests’ demonstrations that have been happening every Saturday for over a year now.

Students and members of the ‘Yellow Vests’ movement are also expected to join the protests, which will take place in several cities throughout the country till Monday.