French President Emmanuel Macron will visit Beijing on 5 April for a rare visit to the rising hegemon, as he struggles to curb angry protests at home.
France is currently experiencing a crisis over proposed pension system reforms, which has led to escalating protests and a breakdown in communication between the government and unions.
The crisis has been exacerbated by the way the reform law was passed in parliament, through an exceptional constitutional measure. This is not a simple or transient political crisis, given the political impasse, the strength of opposition, and the impact of riots and repression.
President Emmanuel Macron is facing a multidimensional crisis, with social, institutional, political, and democratic dimensions. The crisis is unprecedented due to the failure of democratic debate, despite two months of discussion in the National Assembly, and the lack of dialogue with some of the unions.
The situation has worsened with an atmosphere of chaos and warnings of the dangers of authoritarian practices that deviate from the spirit of the parliamentary system, particularly following the law's approval in a top-down manner, according to the opposition claims, and the subsequent escalation of protests.
The adoption of the bill through the government's use of Article 49.3 has exposed the scars in French politics, revealing popular distrust of the government, a breakdown in communication between voters and elected officials, and an obsession with undermining representative democracy.