Paris (dpa) - After weeks of protests the "yellow vests" should start now, according to the will of the French government, a "national debate" to defuse the crisis.
Prime Minister Édouard Philippe will today announce details of the conduct of this debate. From Tuesday onwards, citizens should be able to express their criticism and make suggestions for reform - with round-table discussions taking place over several weeks throughout the country.
Head of state Emmanuel Macron already published on Sunday evening his long-letter to the French citizens. The President, who had come under considerable pressure in the wake of the "Yellow West" crisis, called on the French to participate in large numbers in the debate. But it was neither an election nor a referendum, he clarified. The big topics of the debate are: taxes and public spending, state organization, ecological change and democracy - this also includes the irritant topic of immigration.
Last Saturday, according to official figures, 84,000 people had taken to the streets across the country. The "yellow vests" are opposed to the reform policies of the middle government, and some are calling for Macron's resignation.