Jan 02, 2020 20:09 Asia/Tehran [Updated: Mar 17, 2020 21:48 Asia/Tehran]

Nationwide strikes in France have entered their 29th day, making them the longest in the country since the civil unrest of 1968.

Iran Press/Europe: Protests against the government’s proposed pension reforms began on 5 December, resulting in fuel shortages, power cuts, massive transport disruption and schools being shut down.

In Paris on Thursday 2 January police used tear gas to break up the blockade of a bus depot in the city, marking the latest confrontation between the authorities and unions. 

Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, has refused to yield to protesters’ demands, claiming the controversial plan to roll France’s 42 separate pension schemes into a universal system is necessary to prevent economic collapse in the future.

In his New Year’s Eve address on Tuesday, he called for a “rapid compromise” to bring an end to the industrial action.

Since the movement began on 17 November 2018, tens of thousands have marched every Saturday through the streets of France, airing a number of grievances, ranging from taxes on fuel to President Emmanuel Macron's economic policies.

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