Two Edinburgh students have been left shaken after being trapped in a French Metro station filled with tear gas on Saturday 12 October.
The two girls in question had planned a sightseeing visit and took the Metro to Toulouse, where there was also a mass Yellow Vest demonstration taking place on Saturday.
When both girls tried to leave the station via stairs, five tear gas cannisters were thrown onto the Metro.
One of the girls, currently on her year abroad in France, told the Belfast Telegraph, “We were backed into a corner as it was fully covering us.
“It was heaviest around the escalator, and we soon realised we were trapped down there.
“It would be more difficult to get up and get more air and out of the gas which was what we needed.”
When the girls finally managed to get outside the Metro station, they were comforted by some members of a crowd.“
We don’t know who fired the tear gas in the Metro. In all the confusion, you really did not know if it was the police or the protestors.”
A spokesperson for the University of Edinburgh told The Student,
“Two of our students in France were recently caught up in a protest in Toulouse.
“TheUniversity has been in touch with the students in question to offer support and advice.”
The Yellow Vest Protests began in France last November in response to the increase of fuel costs, as well as increasingly high cost of living. Protests have in the past involved demonstrations and the blocking of roads and fuel depots.
Image: Christophe Leung via Flickr