France Shut Down – Mass Rage At Sarko

Saturday, October 23, 2010
By Paul Martin

France Shut-down Over Retirement Age Battle

Workers who have contributed to France’s steadily increasing wealth over decades are enraged that Sarkozy is re-neging on his campaign promise to not raise retirement age.

Agence France Presse
Alternet.org
October 22, 2010

French unions step up pressure on President Nicolas Sarkozy to cave in on pension reform, calling for more mass strikes and street protests as parts of the country start to run dry following fuel blockades.

The call for workers to join two new days of nationwide demonstrations next Thursday and on November 6 came after another day of unrest across France that saw protestors blocking key sites and clashing with police.

“Strengthened by the support of workers, the young and a majority of the population… the labour organisations have decided to continue and to broaden the mobilisation,” the main unions said in a joint statement.

More than a million people took to the streets on Tuesday, the sixth day of action since early September, to protest the plan to raise the standard minimum retirement age from 60 to 62 and full pension age from 65 to 67.

With no fuel left in more than a quarter of France’s petrol pumps, police are playing what unions dubbed a game of cat and mouse with protestors at refineries and fuel depots in a bid to prevent the country grinding to a halt.

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