France: Going off The Tracks

Going off The Tracks

France's worst outbreak of public strikes since the 1960s grew increasingly turbulent last week. Sparked by walkouts of rail and maritime workers last month, the stoppages cut train service by up to 80%, leaving thousands of travelers stranded, and virtually halted activity in many of the country's major ports. Strikers blocked rail lines and harassed workers who remained on the job. In Paris, police were called out to clear the tracks for the few trains that still ran.

At week's end maritime workers and the government reached a provisional accord containing concessions for the strikers. The rail strike continued unabated, however,...

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