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Archive for Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Police wounded during youths’ jobs plan protest

March 15, 2006

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— Youths protesting a government jobs plan clashed Tuesday with police in an hours-long melee in the French capital that left nine officers injured, one hit in the face with a paving stone, officials said.

Police sprayed tear gas and charged the crowd to counter stones, bottles and even metal barricades heaved at security forces in a second night of unrest. The clashes followed a spontaneous march by an estimated 4,000 students from southern Paris to the Sorbonne University, closed due to the troubles.

At least nine people were arrested during five hours of running confrontations in the Latin Quarter, the Left Bank student neighborhood, police said.

At least nine officers were injured, police said. It was not immediately clear whether there were injuries among students.

At least 17 of France's 84 universities are on strike to protest a new work contract designed to encourage employers to hire the young, but allowing the new hires to be fired at any moment in the first two years. There were partial disruptions at 28 universities around the country.

Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin reiterated that the new contract would be applied.

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