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Eiffel Tower, Louvre to close: what is going on in Paris?

Visitors to Paris can expect a lot of closed signs this weekend

Two of Paris’ biggest drawcards - the Louvre and Eiffel Tower - will close on Saturday along with dozens of other tourism sites and shops in the city as the French capital prepares for a possible repeat of recent violent protests. 


The Louvre


Culture Minister Franck Riester said that the Louvre, Orsay museum, the two operas, and Grand Palais would be among the sites to close, while several first division football matches have been cancelled. 


“We cannot take the risk when we know the threat,” Culture Minister Franck Riester told RTL radio, with ‘yellow vest’ protests under threat by agitators on both sides of the political spectrum.


Eiffel Tower operator SETE warned it could not ensure public safety so will also shut down operations due to the protests.


According to Reuters, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said 65,000 police would be brought in to quell any potential mayhem in the capital.


Meanwhile, shop and restaurant owners around the Champs Elysees and Bastille areas have been urged to close as well as remove any items on the street that could be used as projectiles. 


The movement began as a protest against fuel prices, but have widened to include demands around declining living standards and higher costs of living in France, the ABC reported.


Last weekend, rioters torched cars, looted shops on the Champs Elysees and defaced the Arc de Triomphe. 


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 7 December 2018

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