- Associated Press - Saturday, December 12, 2015

LE BOURGET, France (AP) — Thousands of protesters in Paris, under the close watch of riot police, are holding hands beneath the Eiffel Tower and denouncing a burgeoning Paris climate accord as too weak to save the planet.

Paris police authorized Saturday’s protest despite continued security fears and a state of emergency declared because of the deadly Nov. 13 attacks. The activists remained cheerful as they demonstrated on the Champ de Mars field that stretches beneath the tower.

Danielle Lefait, a retired deaf student teacher, says she is protesting because she is afraid of the environmental risks of proposed shale gas extraction in her town of Arras in northern France. Other protesters are angry the draft climate accord doesn’t do more to force governments to give up fossil fuels blamed for warming the planet.

Protesters also stretched a two-kilometer (1.2-mile) red banner from the Arc de Triomphe to the La Defense business district in Paris — illustrating the “red line” they say climate negotiators shouldn’t cross if they want to protect vulnerable people and the Earth.

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