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France pension reforms: Macron signs pension age rise to 64 into law

French President Emmanuel Macron has signed into law his government’s highly unpopular pension reforms, which raise the state pension age from 62 to 64.

It happened hours after France’s top constitutional body cleared the change.

The Constitutional Council rejected opposition calls for a referendum – but it also struck out some aspects of the reforms, citing legal flaws.

Following the council’s ruling, protesters set fires across Paris and 112 people were arrested.

Twelve days of demonstrations have been held against the reforms since January.

Unions have vowed to continue opposing the reforms, and called on workers across France to return to the streets on 1 May.

President Macron argues the reforms are essential to prevent the pension system collapsing. In March, the government used a special constitutional power to force through the changes without a vote.

He signed the reforms into law in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The Labour Minister Olivier Dussopt has said he expects the reforms to come into effect by the start of September.

After the Friday ruling of the Constitutional Court, trade unions made an unsuccessful last-ditch appeal to the president not to sign the pension-age increase into law.