Police tear gas anti-nuclear protesters in France

French gendarmes are sent in to help clear the site on Feb 22, 2018.
French gendarmes are sent in to help clear the site on Feb 22, 2018.PHOTO: AFP

MANDRES-EN-BARROIS, France (AFP) - Police used tear gas during clashes with anti-nuclear protesters at a waste site in northeastern France on Saturday (March 3).

Demonstrators threw missiles at officers who have been blocking access to woodland at the Bure plant, halfway between Paris and Strasbourg, since a protest camp was dismantled 10 days ago.

Lejuc wood was selected by France's radioactive waste agency (ANDRA) for exploratory drilling ahead of an application to create a nuclear waste storage site.

Police evacuated the forest of about 15 protesters during a major operation on Feb 22 during.

Saturday's rally began calmly with a march of about 300 people, according to police, as demonstrators held meetings and debates.

But during the afternoon a group of protesters, many wearing masks, headed for Lejuc wood, where scuffles broke out with police.

Bure was chosen in 1998 to house a laboratory, 500m underground, in preparation for the burial of the most radioactive or long-lasting nuclear waste in France.

As yet, no radioactive waste is on the site.