UPDATE 3 – French police use pepper spray against Yellow Vests

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UPDATES WITH POLICE ACTION AGAINST PROTESTERS IN BRUSSELS

By Serife Cetin and Yusuf Ozcan

PARIS / BRUSSELS (AA) – French police used pepper spray against Yellow Vest protesters along the Champs-Elysees in the capital Paris on Saturday.

The Yellow Vests, protesting rising oil prices and deteriorating economic conditions, started to gather on the iconic avenue on early Saturday.

The police allowed the protesters onto the street after doing security searches.

During Saturday's protests, the tension between demonstrators and the police sometimes flared up.

Meanwhile, French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said at least 481 people have been arrested so far during Yellow Vest protests on Saturday.

Philippe added that 211 people have been remanded in custody.

Meanwhile, police in Brussels, Belgium, home to NATO and EU institutions, arrested around over 100 protesters ahead of and during the Yellow Vest protests.

Ilse Van de Keere, a police spokesperson, said that arrests were carried out around the Brussels central train station and the Schuman area.

Police in Brussels took tight security measures in the city center and the area where the EU Commission and Council are located.

Security forces in Brussels shunted Yellow Vest protesters onto side streets after the protesters blocked a tunnel between Turkey's Permanent Delegation to the EU and the U.S. Embassy.

Some protesters forced passengers going through the tunnel to wear or display the iconic yellow vests, which are supposed to be kept in vehicles’ trunks for emergency situations, according to Anadolu Agency reporters on site.

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