Minister says 409 injured in gas tax protests around France

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Minister says 409 injured in gas tax protests around France
Demonstrators block cars in Bayonne, southwestern France, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018. One protester was killed and 227 other people were injured — eight seriously — at roadblocks set up around villages, towns and cities across France on Saturday as citizens angry with rising fuel taxes rose up in a grassroots movement, posing a new challenge to beleaguered President Emmanuel Macron. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)

PARIS (AP) — Grassroots protests over hikes in taxes on diesel fuel and gasoline have continued in France, though on a far smaller scale than the ones that paralyzed traffic around the country.

Interior Minister Christophe Castaner on Sunday increased the number of people reported injured during Saturday’s protests to 409. He said 14 of them had serious injuries. Castaner told RTL radio 28 firefighters and member of police forces also were injured.

A protester struck and killed by a car that accelerated in a panic at a roadblock in the Savoie region was the only death. French media reported on Sunday that the driver of the vehicle was handed preliminary manslaughter charges.

Castaner said 157 people were detained for questioning — up from 73 reported Saturday night.

Protests continued at 150 sites.