SNCF strikers clash with police

News Update

Unions vote to extend strike action into an eighth day as MPs begin debate on controversial rail reform bill

POLICE and striking SNCF workers clashed briefly outside the National Assembly building before MPs discussed the controversial bill that has sparked France’s longest rail strike since 2010.

Bottles and flares were thrown at officers guarding the entrance to the building this morning, it has been reported.

There is no sign that the dispute will end any time soon, as unions today voted to extend their strike for another 24 hours.

Meanwhile, between 200 and 300 strikers forced their way into the offices of France 3 in Lyon, demanding a live debate with transport minister Frédéric Cuvillier.

And, in Marseille, about 150 union members held their vote meeting in the hall of the city’s Gare Saint-Charles, to show their “pride”.

Earlier, police evacuated passengers at Montparnasse as strikers blockaded the line this lunchtime, throwing flares and smoke bombs to disrupt trains trying to enter and leave the station.

Strikers on the tracks prevented a train entering the station at Nimes this morning, while about 300 protesters staged an hour-long demonstration in Lille’s City Hall

SNCF has said it expects to run seven out of 10 TGV services tomorrow, as well as 50% of intercity trains, six out of 10 TER services, and the same level of service in Ile de France.

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