At least 310 people have been detained across France as the government faces backlash for forcing through pension reforms that will raise the country’s retirement age from 62 to 64. Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin stated that most of the arrests made on Thursday night were in Paris. The French government has been on the defensive following impromptu protests on Thursday night.

Government spokesperson Olivier Veran and Budget Minister Gabriel Attal reiterated President Emmanuel Macron’s claim that the government hadn’t wanted to use its constitutional power to push through the law. Protesters briefly blocked Paris’ ring road on Friday morning in protest of the pension reform, causing long delays to the morning commute.

Additionally, a strike by garbage workers that has left many streets in Paris full of trash bags is continuing. Darmanin said he would order police to force some of them to work, citing unsanitary conditions as unacceptable.

Massive protests have been held regularly throughout France since mid-January, with millions turning out to voice their opposition to the government’s plan. The government has argued that reform is necessary to keep the pension system’s finances out of the red in the coming years.

source: CNN, BBC, DW