Pension reform: renewed strikes and protests in France

Pension reform: renewed strikes and protests in France

Hundreds of thousands are taking to the streets again in France against the pension reform. The government is immovable on the matter. A mediation is proposed by the trade unions.

In France, hundreds of thousands again protested against President Emmanuel Macron’s pension reforms on Tuesday. According to the police, there were riots in several cities. Across the country, the authorities expected up to 900,000 participants.

Pupils and students also mingled with the protest marches organized by trade unions. Some high schools and colleges have been blocked. The tenth day of nationwide protests was again accompanied by strikes, including at the state railway SNCF.

The protests, which have been peaceful for weeks, have recently been overshadowed by massive violence and clashes. Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin announced the deployment of 13,000 police officers on Tuesday, 5,500 of them in Paris. There, the police asked owners to close their shops along the demonstration route.

No government concessions in sight

The protests are directed against the gradual increase in the retirement age from 62 to 64 years. With the reform, the middle government wants to close an impending gap in the pension fund. The dispute aggravated because the government pushed the text without a vote by the National Assembly. A week ago, two motions of no confidence in the government failed. The reform has thus been passed. It will now be reviewed by the Constitutional Council. Macron wants the reform to come into force by the end of the year.

Despite the ongoing protests, the government is not in sight. The head of the largest trade union, CFDT, Laurent Berger, suggested mediation on Tuesday. The reform must be suspended for a few weeks to allow consultations with a small group of mediators. Government spokesman Olivier Véran gave the but a refusal. You can talk to each other without mediation.

Because of the planned protests, a state visit by the British King Charles III. been cancelled. There was a sigh of relief in Paris, where the CGT union announced an end to the garbage disposal strike after more than three weeks. More than 7000 tons of garbage are still piling up in the streets. The city is now using excavators.

Source: Stern

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