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France’s train strike surpasses 1986 record after 29 days of stoppages

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Manish Saini
Manish works as a Journalist and writer at Revyuh.com. He has studied Political Science and graduated from Delhi University. He is a Political engineer, fascinated by politics, and traditional businesses. He is also attached to many NGO's in the country and helping poor children to get the basic education. Email: Manish (at) revyuh (dot) com

The strike against the reform of the pension system in France on Thursday reached its 29th day of stoppages, which exceeded what had been the longest unemployment in the history of the national company

The strike against the reform of the pension system in France on Thursday reached its 29th day, which exceeded what had been the longest strike in the history of the national railway company, SNCF, in 1986 and 1987, of 28 days almost half of the country trains were cancelled again on Thursday, while in the capital just two subway lines are operating normally and the remaining thirteen are partially open during the hours of more traffic.

In the case of December 1986, which also extended during the Christmas holidays and until mid-January 1987, the strike sought to obtain improvements in working conditions. Years later, in the winter of 1995, the strikes against the pension reform of Prime Minister Alain Juppé (political godfather of the current head of the government, Édouard Philippe) lasted 22 days, until the Executive retired.

After the declaration of the French president, Emmanuel Macron, last Tuesday, where he was firm in his will to maintain the reform, the secretary-general of the CGT, Philippe Martinez, called on Wednesday to strike the whole of the French with mobilizations to national level until the project is withdrawn.

Pulse with Macron

“We urge all the French to mobilize, to go on strike because, in front of a president who plays complacency and believes that everything is going well in the country, the alarm signal must be stronger”, Martinez said.

In addition, the CGT has also called to block the refineries on January 7 and 10, an act that would be “illegal”, as reported this morning by the Secretary of State for the Economy, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, on the BFM TV network.

Although the negotiations between the Government and the union will resume on January 7, the confidence in finding an agreement seems lost, and the social associations hope that the mobilization on January 9, backed by unions such as lawyers, will show that the movement can maintain its strength.

Throughout this month, the CGT has collected more than one million euros in support of strikers, with the support of more than 18,000 donors, to which new amounts are added. This same Thursday, at the Gare de Lyon, union representatives handed out a new check of 50,000 euros to the drivers who were demonstrating in front of the station.

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