Couple’s reaction to street in flames behind them is ‘most Parisian thing’ ever seen
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Footage of a couple kicking back with a glass of wine while the street in front of them went up in flames has been described as the 'most Parisian thing ever'.
France is currently facing turmoil as residents have launched protests over the government's controversial decision to raise the country's official retirement age from 62 to 64.
The law change went ahead without a public vote, prompting people to take to the streets in a combination of both peaceful protests and more violent and destructive demonstrations.
It was an example of the latter that was caught on camera and shared online last week, showing a fire burning in the middle of the street near a bar.
Though the fire had presumably been sparked by furious protesters, other people in the area became the living embodiment of the burning 'everything is fine' meme as they sat at a table while the blaze burned just a few metres away.
One pair were enjoying a glass of red wine as the chaos unfolded, before being joined by another woman who sat with her back to the fire, evidently trying to pretend nothing was wrong.
Though what's happening in the country is unsettling, people couldn't help but find humour in the bizarre scene caught on camera, and naturally it's since been shared far and wide across the internet.
"I think this is the most French video I've ever seen," one person wrote after coming across the clip, while another joker questioned: "Which wine goes best with a bonfire at the barricades?"
"This is the most Parisienne [sic] thing I've ever seen," wrote a third.
The continued disruptions in the country prompted King Charles to postpone his planned three-day trip to France, which was originally set to begin on Sunday (26 March).
Meanwhile, Dunja Mijatovic, the Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner, has condemned the use of excessive force against protesters as she described the situation as 'worrying'.
“Violent incidents have occurred, some of which have targeted the forces of law and order. But sporadic acts of violence by some demonstrators or other reprehensible acts committed by others during a protest cannot justify excessive use of force by agents of the state,” Mijatovic said in a statement.
“Nor are such acts sufficient to deprive peaceful demonstrators of their enjoyment of the right to freedom of assembly.
"It is up to the authorities to allow the actual exercise of these freedoms by protecting peaceful demonstrators and journalists covering these protests against police brutality and against violent individuals acting within or on the sidelines of marches."
Though Mijatovic acknowledged police 'may be authorised to use force', she said it should be a 'last resort and in strict compliance with the conditions of necessity and proportionality'.
"The primary obligation of every Council of Europe member state is to protect the people under its jurisdiction and their human rights," she added.
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