Yellow Vest protest
© Reuters / Benoit Tessier
"Yellow vests" demonstrators protest on March 16, 2019.
French president Emmanuel Macron, who rebuked British MPs for failing to respect the will of the people after they repeatedly refused to accept Theresa May's Brexit deal, has been criticised for ignoring his own people.

Former UK parliamentarian George Galloway said that Macron's lecture came from a leader whose country was "on fire every Saturday".

Macron, one of the European Union's harshest critics of Britain's indecisiveness over Brexit, told a meeting of the European Council on Thursday that the result of the British referendum must be respected.

"We need to hear our people, we need to address their fears. We can't play with fears, or simply tear up pages without offering anything else," he said.

But former Labour MP Galloway said that Macron's own record of listening to the people was far from flawless.

There have been on-going anti-austerity protests in France since last November and the French authorities have been criticised for their heavy-handed approach against the demonstrators.

And earlier this week, the French Interior Ministry announced plans to ban rallies in some parts of Paris following rioting last weekend.

Macron has also announced plans to deploy French soldiers in the streets this Saturday to secure government buildings and symbolic sites. Critics said this move was reminiscent of last time the army patrolled the streets in France, in the late 1940s.

"As I recall, [Louis XVI] Bourbon, the king of France, banned demonstrations back in 1789. We know what happened next. The French people are not to be excluded from their own streets," Galloway told RT.
"By the way, he was lecturing [Britain] about democracy, while his whole country is on fire every Saturday afternoon."