By Yusuf Ozcan
PARIS (AA) - An Anadolu Agency photojournalist injured last week during clashes between police and demonstrators in Paris has been discharged from the hospital after undergoing surgery.
Mustafa Yalcin had a five-hour-operation in Cochin Hospital after suffering injuries to his left eye on Dec. 5 when he was hit in the face with a projectile fired by security forces.
Yalcin told Anadolu Agency the incident occurred while he was on Magenta Boulevard next to Republique Square to watch protests over pension reform.
There were no disruptions when the protests started, he said, but suddenly violence began and he hid next to a wall.
When he was hit, he lay face down and asked volunteer health workers for help, he recalled.
The surgery was supposed to take two hours but ended taking five.
“The doctor said my eye won't be like it used to be and the healing process will take years, not months,” he added.
His eye was thought to be injured by a tear gas canister used by police, but according to Ronan Pacs, a witness who helped give Yalcin first aid at the scene, he was hit with a plastic hand grenade, not a gas canister.
According to France’s Interior Ministry, over 800,000 people took part in the protests, while labor unions put the number at nearly 1.5 million.
Service strikes impacted all public transport systems, according to local media reports.
Tensions continue to escalate as Minister and High Commissioner in Charge of Pension Reform Jean-Paul Delevoye and labor union leaders have yet to reach a deal as of Wednesday.