French authorities are preparing to deploy 89,000 police across France this weekend to contain “yellow vest” protests. They began as demonstrations against now-abandoned fuel-tax hikes, but it is feared the movement has now broadened to become an expression of general discontent and an opportunity for looting. Around 8,000 cops will patrol the streets of Paris and 12 armored vehicles will also be on standby in the capital for “Act IV,” the name being given to activists for the proposed fourth weekend of protests. Authorities said the “exceptional means” were warranted due to the likely presence of “the extreme-right, who dream of a revolution, and the extreme-left, who advocate insurrection.” “Given what has happened, it is absolutely necessary to take all the possible measures to stop the rioters taking hold of this movement,” a police spokesman said.
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