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France

Open-ended Paris metro strike called as Euro 2016 looms

© Matthieu Alexandre / AFP | An open-ended strike by Paris transport workers has been called for June 2.

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2016-05-23

The main union of rail and metro workers in Paris on Monday called for an open-ended strike to begin just a week before Euro 2016, raising the prospect of severe travel disruption as thousands of football fans flock to the French capital this summer.

The call for stoppages from June 2 onwards was made by the CGT labour union, which is already spearheading weekly rail strikes and other protests over labour law reforms that would make hiring and firing easier.

President François Hollande, heading towards elections a year from now, has refused to withdraw the labour reform, which the CGT and several smaller unions want scrapped on the grounds that it would undermine high standards of labour protection.

The CGT said the strike would affect all services run by the RATP – the state-owned operator of public transport in Paris – including the metro, tram, the overground RER rail service and certain bus services in the capital Ile-de-France region.

Millions of fans and foreigners are expected to attend Euro 2016, one of football’s biggest international tournaments involving 24 national teams, which runs from June 10 to July 10.

A number of matches will be held at both the Parc des Princes stadium in southern Paris as well as the Stade de France in the Saint-Denis suburb of the French capital.

The CGT said that the strike on Paris’s metro network was being called over pay demands as well as the labour reform, which have sparked waves of street protests across France in recent months, some of which have turned violent.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)

Date created : 2016-05-23

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