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Brad Matthews


NextImg:As pension protests rage, President Macron of France is caught taking off luxury watch in interview

As French protests over his unilateral reform to the nation’s pension system continue, President Emmanuel Macron was caught making a fashion faux pas during an interview.

The root of the ongoing protests are two reforms Mr. Macron passed without a parliamentary vote: the raising of the minimum retirement age by two years from 62 to 64, and the planned increase of the amount of time served needed to receive a full pension from 41 years to 43 years.

Before and after footage of the Wednesday interview compiled on Twitter show Mr. Macron with and without his customized Bell & Ross BR V1-92 watch, which can cost over $3,500 without customization. Some on social media had claimed the watch cost over $80,000.

The watch can be heard striking the table, and Mr. Macron’s team contends the timepiece was removed so as to stop the sound.

Mr. Macron’s political opponents immediately picked up on the symbolism of the failed sleight-of-hand, particularly the left-wing La France Insoumise (France Unbowed) party.

Quote-tweeting a video of Mr. Macron removing the watch, La France Insoumise parliamentarian Farida Amrani wrote “The president of the rich has never lived up to his name so well.”