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Finns in Paris warned to avoid crowds as "yellow vests" gear up for more protests

Finland has joined the embassies of many other countries warning their nationals about the possibility of more rioting in Paris.

Yellow Vest protestors clash with French riot police and security forces on the Champs Elysees in Paris.
Riot police confront protesters at the Champs Elysées in Paris last weekend. Image: AOP

The Finnish Embassy in Paris is warning Finnish citizens to steer clear of crowds and demonstrations in the French capital.

Officials in France and particularly in Paris are bracing for a possible new wave of protests by so-called "yellow vest" demonstrators, who initially took to the streets over now-scuppered plans to hike fuel taxes, but have expressed broader opposition to the high cost of living and the policies of the current administration.

Many businesses in Paris have shuttered their shop windows and cleared their goods off the streets as a precaution against further damage from unrest. At the same time, tourist hot spots such as the Louvre museum and the Eiffel tower remained shut on Saturday over vandalism fears.

The government has scrapped a planned fuel tax hike due to take effect from next year following rioting across the city last weekend that saw more than 100 people injured and hundreds arrested. However the climbdown has done little to appease anger against President Emmanuel Macron and his policies.

Embassy issues website advisory

Finland has joined the embassies of many other countries warning their nationals about the possibility of more rioting in Paris.

Finland’s embassy in Paris also issued an announcement on its website urging citizens in the country to avoid large gatherings and protests and to exercise due caution in the circumstances.

It also called on visitors to the French capital to note that football games have been cancelled and that major department stores and some tourist attractions will be closed on Saturday.

The embassy added that the metro system might be shut down as a precaution and that heavy road traffic might result.

The Finnish embassy said that it is following the situation and could provide more information as needed.

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