Farmers to halt Paris traffic
Up to 10,000 protestors expected today, with convoys of tractors likely to affect the morning and evening rush hour
THOUSANDS of farmers are planning to bring traffic in Paris to a standstill today in a major protest over living conditions and falling incomes.
About 1,200 tractors are expected to join the procession between 10.30 and 15.00, which will head from the Place de la Nation to Bastille, République and back to Nation.
Roads around the capital are facing disruption during the morning and evening rush hours as convoys of tractors are planning to use the motorways to get to and from the demonstration.
The péripherique around the Porte de Vincennes is likely to be especially busy.
Agriculture union Fnsea has called the day of action after a series of suicides by farmers. It follows a similar protest by milk producers last year that affected deliveries for several weeks.
Most of the farmers taking part in today's demonstration are cereal producers, who are calling for better state and EU help after their income more than halved last year due to falling prices.
Almost 400 farmer suicides were recorded last year, according to researchers at the Institut National de Santé. Nine suicides have been reported in the Basse-Normandie region alone in the first three months of 2010.