Macron caught trying to remove £2k watch in live TV interview as pension protests rage

Emmanuel Macron was caught in a humiliating moment as he was seen on camera removing his expensive watch mid-interview as riots sweep the country. Critics claim he did so to try and shake off his title of “president of the rich” as thousands of French people take part in protests against his pension reform. 

The French president had already had to postpone the state visit of King Charles and Camilla due to safety concerns about the safety of his country when the key moment from an interview with two of France’s main TV channels went viral. 

Mr Macron’s as he attempted to justify his reasons for increasing the pension age, banged his watch on the table with a loud thud. He could then be seen taking his hands under the desk as he continued to speak. 

When he brought them back up again, the watch was gone. 

His representatives have said he removed the timepiece, which the Élysée Palace told The Independent is a £2,100 BRV 1-92 model by Bell & Ross, because it was “clinking on the table” – but his critics believe the moment tells a different story. 

Clémence Guetté, an MP from the France Unbowed party of Jean-Luc Mélenchon, responded: “Just as he is talking about ‘minimum wage workers’ who have never had such high purchasing power, he discreetly removes his pretty luxury watch.”

Her colleague Farida Amrani added: “The president of the rich has never worn his name so well.”

Mr Macron has struggled to shake the moniker, having recently faced criticism for giving Jeff Bezos – one of the richest men alive – France’s highest honour, the Légion d’honneur, even as hundreds across the country were protesting out of concern for their future finances.

The president has ironically referred to himself in the past as the “master of the clocks” because he likes to set the pace of French politics.

READ MORE: Bordeaux town hall set on fire as pension protests continue in France [REVEAL]

However, recently his attempts to do so has turned against him, as his change to the pension age continues to motivate riots across France. 

Protesters have attacked police stations and courthouses, and even set a town hall in Bordeaux on fire.

Hundreds have been arrested in the protests. 

Mr Macron’s defence of the pension age changes are that they are a “necessity” to balance the government’s books. He also pointed out pointed out that when he began working there were 10 million French pensioners and now there were 17 million, adding: “The longer we wait, the more [the deficit] will deteriorate.”

The president, who started his time in office with a substantial majority and now struggles with a minority government, decided to force the reforms through without being reviewed in the National Assembly – the lower house of the French parliament. 

The government barely survived a no-confidence vote following the risky political decision.

Asked during his TV interview if he had any regrets, President Macron said that if he had one, it was in not succeeding in convincing people of the necessity of the reform. He added: “But I don’t live with regret, I live with will, tenacity, engagement, because I love our country and people.”