As Macron confronts unfriendly crowds in rural France, police prevent protesters from approaching

Teargas was fired by French police on Thursday in a southern French village where President Emmanuel Macron visited a school.

This happened a day after the 45-year-old head of state was booed and heckled over his unpopular pension reform.

Macron traveled outside of Paris to discuss education with the aim of turning the page on the pension changes and demonstrating that he is not hiding from voters.

His opponents have been outraged about legislation that was passed, but Macron announced that teachers would receive a pay raise between 100-230 euros ($110- $250) per month after taxes from September.

Ahead of his speech, police fired teargas when hundreds of people tried to advance towards the school shouting “Macron, resign!” and blowing whistles.

Local authorities announced a ban on “portable sound equipment”, including amplifiers and speakers.

Macron’s left-wing political opponents have asked their supporters to bash pans during his televised address to the nation on Monday evening, which has become an audible sign of discontent at his policies.

The apparent pan ban led to ridicule, with some political figures stating that it was impossible to leave a democratic crisis behind by banning saucepans.

Macron argued again that raising the retirement age from 62 to 64 was necessary to help France reduce its public spending and bring the country into line with its European neighbors.

He signed the legislation into law on Friday evening after receiving a green light from the country’s constitutional court.

However, protests continued, with union members entering the headquarters of the pan-European stock exchange Euronext in the main Paris business district, and some rail workers going on strike again, which led to the cancellation of one in five regional trains and some commuter services.

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