French railways workers go on two-day strike (Video)

French railways workers go on two-day strike :French railway workers are on a two-day strike against government plans to reform the rail network, disrupting train services across the country.

The strike which was called by main union organizations — including General Confederation of Labour (GCL), Labour Force and Rail Sud — began 7.00 pm (1800 GMT) on Wednesday and ends 8.00 am (0700 GMT) on Friday.

The strike, the second called by unions opposed to a reform on the state-owned rail company, affected train services in different parts of the country, with people waiting for trains in station halls.

Workers are protesting government reforms in the management of French railways, saying the move will break the railway company into different groups, and destroy public service.

“We have many demands, the first one is obviously to stop the rail reform in France and then there’s the question of wages, employment, safety, working conditions, safety on trains and the rail freight issues,” Cyril Renault, of the left-wing union CGT, said on Wednesday.

“This is the second time we have asked the government to negotiate with us but our demands are falling on deaf ears. It’s high time they started listening to us, so this strike is a warning. If the reform is tabled at the National Assembly, they won’t be able to say they didn’t see that another strike was coming,” he added.

The unions say the job cuts in the country’s rail network are the main reason behind a train crash south of Paris in July. Seven people were killed and dozens were injured in the accident.

France’s state rail operator, SNCF, employs 150,000 people on the rail network.

French railways workers go on two-day strike

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