France strikes turn violent, as police clash with protesters
A 52-year-old metro driver, who went by the name of Robert, told CNN that it's "not a pleasure" to be protesting on Thursday because he's "losing money," but said it was an important message to be part of.
We are fighting for our pensions and if we need to close the metro for a long time, we will."
Here are a couple of pictures after the sun set in Paris:
Protesters in Paris are moving in droves towards Place de la Nation -- which lies on the eastern side of the French capital.
As of 5 p.m. (11 a.m. ET), police had detained 87 people for questioning.
CNN Correspondent Melissa Bell is live in Paris. Watch the stream below to follow what's going on and find out more about why tens of thousands of workers across France are on the streets to protest President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to overhaul the pension system:
Protesters in Paris are now at Place de la République. Eventually, their plan is to move down Boulevard Voltaire towards Place de la Nation.
Currently they're gathered around the statue in the center of the square -- which is of Marianne, a symbol of the French Republic.
"We'll be here until the end of the night," one protester, who went by the name of Charles, told CNN.
Violence has started to break out at Place de la République in Paris, as black-clad protesters began setting objects on fire and throwing bricks.
Police responded by firing tear gas towards demonstrators and blocking streets.
Here are some pictures from the scene:
French police have deployed tear gas near Paris' Place de la Republique in a bid to disperse demonstrators.
It comes after radical protestors, clad in black, set trash cans on fire and hurled objects at riot police. Chants of "Macron, resign!" echoed along Boulevard de Magenta.
A trailer was also set ablaze and CNN witnessed a protester climb a gate and destroy a security camera.
As of 3:30 p.m. (9:30 a.m. ET), police had detained 71 people for questioning and carried out 9,350 preventative checks.
The Paris Police Prefecture has ordered all business owners -- including premises serving alcoholic beverages and restaurants located on Boulevard de Denain, Boulevard de Magenta, Place de la Republique, Boulevard Voltaire and Place de la Nation -- to shutter until the conclusion of the protests on Thursday.
Officials also reminded owners that the protection of their businesses from damage or theft falls to them.
Paris' famed boulevards continue to fill with people but it isn't the only French city where mass demonstrations are taking place today.
Demonstrations are taking place in several French cities Thursday but they are not throwing the French President off.
Emmanuel Macron is “calm and determined” in the face of the strikes and mass protests, according to a spokeswoman with the Elysee Palace.
As of 2 p.m. (8 a.m. ET), police had detained 65 people for questioning and carried out 6,476 preventative checks in Paris.
CNN’s Melissa Bell describes the atmosphere at the Paris march as “enthusiastic” and “electric."
The CGT trade union earlier announced that Paris transport operator RATP will prolong its strike until Monday, severely impacting transport in the capital.