French riot control officers responding to ‘Yellow Vest’ protests have been seen equipped with loaded Heckler and Koch G36 semi-automatic rifles, as the protests against the leadership of French President Emmanuel Macron continue into their seventh week.
This comes as a former French education minister, Luc Ferry, has called for French police to open fire on who he perceives as violent demonstrators. Previously, police responding to the populist protests had deployed tear gas, rubber bullets and other crowd dispersion techniques, often with mixed results.
Despite attempts by Macron to ameliorate the mass backlash against his neoliberal policies, the ongoing working-class demonstrations show no signs of coming to a halt anytime soon. Having achieved their initial policy goal of getting Macron’s government to scrap a planned diesel fuel tax, many of the ‘gilet jaunes’ protestors are focusing on issues central to the working class’s quality of life in France, such as cost of living, declining wages, and rising prices.
More than 80,000 police officers are said to have been preparing for this weekend’s rounds of protests, in which demonstrators have selected locations away from the capital of Paris, such as the smaller city of Bourges. It remains to be seen if armed police officers prove to be an effective counter-measure against incidents of riotous and supposedly violent demonstrations
Japan: Number of October Suicides Exceeded All COVID-19 Deaths Throughout 2020
The cure should not be worse than the problem itself.
Japan has seen more of its people die in one month from suicide than from total COVID-19 deaths in 2020.
Japan’s National Police Agency reported that 2,153 people committed suicide in the month of October, while fewer than 2,000 people have died from COVID-19 all year.
While it is true that Japan has historically had high rates of suicide compared to other nations, suicides had generally decreased throughout 2020.
Despite the high number of suicides in October, the Japanese have avoided implementing draconian lockdowns and restrictions for the most part, though they have been seeing record high numbers of cases in the month of November. Thus it should be interesting to see what their suicide numbers for this month look like.
Meanwhile, in Canada, a CBC reporter recorded herself stalking church attendees on Sunday:
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