Support for the Yellow Vests’ sometimes violent opposition to France’s high taxes and stagnant wages showed little sign of waning.
PARIS — With the smell of tear gas and smoke still lingering in Paris and other cities after a fourth weekend of protests, France’s president planned a nationwide address on Monday to respond to the anger among many middle-class and working-poor citizens frustrated over their declining economic means.
The televised speech by President Emmanuel Macron, announced by the Élysée Palace on Sunday, will be his first substantive public answer to the so-called Yellow Vest movement that has transfixed France and spilled into other countries in Europe.
Mr. Macron has been conferring with advisers and ministers and will meet with a wider group on Monday, including local elected officials, members of Parliament and union representatives, to discuss proposals aimed at addressing at least some of the movement’s demands.
“Clearly we have underestimated the need of our fellow citizens to speak up about the difficulties they face and to be involved in the formulation of solutions,” Benjamin Griveaux, a government spokesman, said in an interview Sunday on Europe 1 Radio.
“The solutions that we need to find must take into consideration each person’s reality — it’s almost like tailored to fit,” he said. “The anger that is being expressed is sometimes very different from one area to another.”
The Yellow Vests take their name from the fluorescent hazard vests adopted by the protesters as a sign of their economic distress.
The challenges Mr. Macron will face in speaking to his fellow citizens are considerable.
He must connect with the many who feel abandoned and make clear not only that he understands their anger but also that he is prepared to listen to their ideas and take action, analysts said.

Continue reading...