Tuesday, April 18, 2023

The Red Herald: Protests in France continue after the pension reform is written into law


The Constitutional Council of France approved the main points of the pension reform on Friday evening. The president of France Emmanuel Macron signed the law in the early hours of Saturday. The Constitutional Council rejected six points of the law, which would offer some kind of “relief” for the workers – for example the points which would have encouraged larger companies to hire workers over the age of 55 and ensure more elderly workers a guaranteed job until retirement. The Council also rejected the proposal for a referendum on the matter.

Large demonstrations and strikes, like many times before took place again on the 13th of April, the day before the Constitutional Council gave its verdict. Protests intensified after the ruling. In Paris, protesters had already gathered near the building of the Constitutional Council, where the riot police had put up a protective shield, early on Friday, and received the ruling with rage. Across the city fires were lit. Police again behaved violently towards the protesters.

The League of Revolutionary Youth (Ligue de la Jeunesse Révolutionnaire) and Young Revolutionaries (Jeunes Révolutionnaires) particip,ated into a large demonstration in Paris on Thursday and to the blockade of P8 University in St-Denis on Friday. Young Revolutionaries reports on Twitter that they were also present in front of the city hall on Friday and participated into a large demonstration which successfully defied the police. They shouted slogans like “The French state is not our state, all power to the proletariat!”, “Louis XVI, Louis XVI, we beheaded him, Macron, Macron, we can start again!”, “Long live the armed struggle of oppressed peoples!”, “Darmanin, rapist, murderer!”

In Rennes, the entrance to a police station and a conference center were set on fire after the verdict of the Consitutional Council was released. Large protests also erupted in Marseille and Toulouse.

In Saint-Etienne, the building of the MEDEF, the organization of enterprises, was stormed by protesters on the 14th of April. The power was also cut from the building and surrounding enterprises.

Protesters invade MEDEF building in Saint-Etienne.

On the 13th of April 10,000 people participated to a demonstration in Saint-Etienne. League of the Revolutionary Youth reports on Twitter that large amount of youth took part in the demonstration.

In Lyon, the League of the Revolutionary Youth took part to a demonstration on the 13th of April. Slogans like “It is right to rebel!” and “Palestine will win!” were painted along the way.

In Aubervilliers garbage drivers went on strike on Thursday morning, and formed a blockade to their garage. Young Revolutionaries joined the workers and supported the blockade. The police attacked the striking workers and arrested members and supporters of the CGT union.

In Guinkamp, Young Revolutionaries organized a blockade of the high school of Jules Vernes, in which around 60 high school students took part. The students also blocked a nearby roundabout, and formed a procession that joined the larger demonstration in the city that day.

On the 14th of April, activists of the League of Revolutionary Youth in Toulouse organized an open meeting introducing the organization to the participants.

Source: @LigueJ_R on Twitter

Young Revolutionaries organized an event educating participants on fascism and anti-fascist struggle in Rennes on 12th of April. The event highlighted the bourgeois nature of fascism and how the bourgeoisie will resort to fascism in times when the class struggle intensifies.

Event on fascism on the 12th of April. Source: @JR_EF_ on Twitter

The French unions have called for a massive wave of protests and strikes on 1st of May to protest the passing of the law.