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Test Of Wills: Protests Stay, French Senate Pushes On With Pension Law …

  • October 21st, 2010
  • Posted by EUEditor

french-strike-libcom.jpgLegislators in the French Senate made heavy weather processing, on Wednesday (20.10.10), the pensions legislation which has been the focus of massive strikes and continuing street protests for more than the last week.   

Against Opposition protests and hundreds of proposed amendments, the government of President Nicolas Sarkozy edged towards completing the change, which will extend the age for workers to retire and draw down on their pension rights.

It’s being seen as an attack on incomes and rights, with protest action remaining in  strength, affecting transport and especially fuel supplies, queues of cars at hundreds of service stations that are running out of stock.

Police were again sent into oil refineries to lift blockades of workers.

Nicolas Sarkozy said the industrial action, against his move, would harm the economy – especially the oil barricades.

“If they don’t end soon, this chaos could paralyze the country and affect jobs as well as hurting economic activity”, he said.

The conservative press noted that numbers on strike had receded a little, while numbers of protestors, many of them students, remained at around one-million, perhaps reducing a little over the last day or two.

Government leaders hope the commotion will die off once they have their legislation through the parliament; their opponents say that widespread public ire against the government is now strong, expressing itself over many issues, and set to continue.


Euronews, “Srike: Slow progress for Sakozy pension bill in Senate”, 20.10.10., (20.10.10).

Leigh Thomas and David Stamp, “Factbox: French media comment on strikes and pensions reform”, Reuters, London, 20.10.10., (20.10.10).

Gregory Viscusi and Tara Patel, Bloomberg, NY, “French Government Vows Fuel Supplies as Unions Extend Protests”, 20.10.10., (20.10.10).