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France braced for travel chaos as rail and airport strikes loom

Travellers to France face further disruption this week with strike action across the country’s rail network due to start on Wednesday.

Air traffic controllers are also expected to strike over the weekend (June 3-5) which is likely to force domestic and international flight cancellations.

Paris metro staff have voted to strike on Thursday (May 2) and in separate industrial action Air France pilots have voted to strike later in June.

The strikes are over changes to labour laws which will see employers given greater freedom to reduce pay, increase the working week from 35 hours to 46 and easing conditions for firing workers in an economic downturn.

French president Francois Hollande is refusing to give in to the demands of the CGT Union’s demands. The CGT has warned it would continue its campaign of stoppages and demonstrations to pressure the government to scrap the reforms.

A new national day of action is planned by unions for June 14, when the bill goes to the Senate.

Belgium rail services are expected to be heavily disrupted for a further 24 hours as industrial action continues.

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