After the surge in fuel prices in France, the so-called Yellow Vests movement has held protests, calling firstly on the government to lower the prices, and then also on French President Emmanuel Macron to resign. On Wednesday, the French National Assembly approved a moratorium on the planned fuel price hike.
The French labour union Vigi has called on its members working in the national police and in the Ministry of the Interior to start an indefinite strike on Saturday, joining the Yellow Vests movement. The statement was placed on Vigi’s Facebook page on Wednesday.
“The demands made by the Yellow Vests movement related to all of us. The time to organize legally and express solidarity with them for the benefit of all has come”, Vigi’s post reads. “We are being perceived as mercenaries, given bonuses for overtime work, but they cannot compensate for the decisions made by the government.”
The call is directed at “administrative, technical, scientific and state workers/cooks from the Ministry of the Interior”, according to the statement.
“Act IV” of the Yellow Vests’ protests, which is to start on Saturday, will make the government take precautions, as during the previous “Act III”, more than 260 people, including some 80 police, were injured. Earlier, French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner announced that he would reinforce security for next Saturday.
Michel Thooris, the head of the France Police labour union, said that the French government had failed to implement security measures in Paris, noting that “a majority of the French continue to back the movement”. She also highlighted that using the armed forces against civilians would indicate that France is heading towards a civil war.
The protests, which started as a movement against a hike in fuel prices, turned violent, leading to more than 600 people being injured and at least two deaths. The three-week demonstration forced the French government to drop the fuel tax rise from the 2019 budget.
“The government is ready for dialogue and is showing it because this tax increase has been dropped from the 2019 budget bill”, Edouard Philippe, the French prime minister, said on December