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French drivers blocking roads to protest rising fuel taxes

Drivers in France are blocking roads across the country to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron.

Protesters pledge to target tollbooths, roundabouts and the bypass that rings Paris on Saturday. The government is preparing to send police to remove protesters and threatening fines.

The taxes are part of Macron's strategy of weaning France off fossil fuels. Many drivers see them as emblematic of a presidency seen as disconnected from day-to-day economic difficulties.

Demonstrators block a motorway exit in protest against fuel tax, in Marseille, southern France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoClaude Paris)

The protesters have dubbed themselves the "yellow jackets" because they wear fluorescent vests that all French drivers must keep in their vehicles in case of car troubles.

Separately, ambulances briefly blocked Paris' Champs-Elysees on Friday to protest new rules on ambulance financing and put pressure on Macron's government.

Demonstrators gather to protest fuel taxes in Paris, France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. Placard reads, yellow jacket black anger. (AP PhotoMichel Euler)

Demonstrators gather to protest fuel taxes in Paris, France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. Placard reads, Macron your cut off from people. (AP PhotoMichel Euler)

Demonstrators block a motorway exit to protest fuel tax, in Marseille, southern France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoClaude Paris)

Demonstrators block a motorway exit to protest fuel taxes, in Marseille, southern France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoClaude Paris)

Demonstrators block a crossroads to protest fuel taxes in Marseille, southern France, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoClaude Paris)

People gather to protest against fuel taxes, in Lyon, central France, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoLaurent Cipriani)

People gather to protest fuel taxes, in Lyon, central France, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. France is bracing for a nationwide traffic mess as drivers plan to block roads to protest rising fuel taxes, in a new challenge to embattled President Emmanuel Macron. (AP PhotoLaurent Cipriani)