[Central News Agency] The 9th national mobilization of the French anti-refund reform law debuted today, and it is also the first time since the mandatory passage of the law.
The number of people in Paris hit a record high, showing that the people's anger continued to burn.
Several interviewees told WebMD that reforms can be discussed, but tough and lack of social dialogue are unacceptable.
The ninth mobilization of the French anti-retirement reform bill was launched today. A large number of demonstrators poured into the streets of major cities across the country. Teachers, national railway and subway employees also went on strike to protest Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne’s announcement in the National Assembly on the 16th that the use of the constitution’s Article 49.3 Mandatory passage of the retirement system reform bill, extending the statutory retirement age from 62 to 64.
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On the 20th, the National Assembly voted against the government's no-confidence motion. Among them, the motion supported by cross-party parties was rejected by 9 votes, and the bill was passed.
Therefore, today is also the first national protest after the passage of the bill. In addition, President Emmanuel Macron’s speech on the 22nd, which gave fuel to the fire of the people, made the number of people mobilized in Paris hit a new high today.
In the afternoon in Paris, crowds crowded into Place de la Bastille, a symbol of the French Revolution. Demonstrators held signs and shouted slogans and slowly marched towards Place de la République.
Not only the major trade unions mobilized, but also many student organizations participated. The team was huge, the atmosphere was joyful, and the music was endless.
According to the Paris police department, 119,000 people had been mobilized in the capital, the highest since the protests began in late January.
According to the French Confederation of Trade Unions (CGT), the number of demonstrators across the country is 3.5 million; the number of the Ministry of the Interior is 1.08 million, twice as many as the previous mobilization.
Marjorie Bertho, who is engaged in the airport transportation industry, told the Central News Agency, "The government wants to force reforms through Article 49.3 of the Constitution. Although it is done in accordance with the French Constitution, we do not think it is a democratic move. Today People take to the streets to express their dissatisfaction".
As a member of the National Federation of Autonomous Trade Unions (UNSA), Bodo pointed out that most people believe that reform is necessary, "because the current system has been around for a long time, it is necessary to adjust, time and society have changed. The reason why the people are opposed today is that Since there was no discussion and consultation. So protest, request to withdraw, maybe restart the discussion to find a consensus.”
She told reporters that trade unions have also put forward reform proposals, but no one has listened to them.
Mathieu, who is engaged in the communication industry, and Hugo, the host of the program, also agree that reform is needed, and they are opposed to the government's attitude of forcibly crossing the border and ignoring the voice of the people.
Mathieu told WebMD he is dissatisfied with the hypocrisy in front of him.
"Macron said he wanted to debate, but he used a lot of means to avoid dialogue, and there was very little social discussion. He only asked the people to make efforts, but those who enjoy special systems, politicians, etc. are not affected."
Mathieu believes that the debate on retirement system reform is necessary. "Because of the aging population, more pension budgets will be needed in the future. But can't we get more people to discuss and find other solutions than just delaying the retirement age?" In addition, he said that he had read reports that one-third of the population below the poverty line in France did not live to the age of 60. They paid annuities all their lives but could not enjoy them. "As the people, we want to assist and protect the most vulnerable groups." .
Hugo said that the data presented by the government is not wrong. The working population has indeed decreased, the number of retirees has increased, and they are living longer, so they cannot pay annuities as they did 20 years ago.
"It's open to debate, maybe through extended insurance contributions or something, but it's up to debate anyway."
Hugo emphasized that reforms can be discussed, and government bills are not all negative, but the method of forcing the passage of bills is unsatisfactory. "Debate is not respected, and France, which claims to be a great democratic country, uses Constitution 49.3."
Friend Romain said that after hearing Macron's speech on the 22nd that 76% of the people refused to pay the bill, he felt obliged to participate in the mobilization again, "more broadly, it is the way people are treated in this democratic debate. We can be for or against reform, but the government's reaction to the voice of the people is really inappropriate".
Interestingly, Bodeaux and Hugo heard that the reporter was from Taiwan, and they both expressed their support for Taiwan in facing threats from neighboring countries. France and Taiwan share democracy and can learn from each other.
Berdot said, "France and Taiwan are friendly, and Taiwan also needs democracy and defends its own rights." Hugo said, "In the face of years of conflicts in China, strongly support Taiwan and don't give up."
Christelle of the French Confederation of Trade Unions has a different view. She believes that French pensions are not in danger of bankruptcy. Bill withdrawn."
However, the atmosphere at the front of the line changed after passing through the Place de la République towards the Paris Opera House. Thousands of extremist groups "Black Bloc" and vandals appeared. Some businesses were smashed and newsstands were set on fire.
The police threw smoke bombs and clashes broke out several times. The situation was chaotic in the evening, and at least 58 people were eventually arrested.
Bernard condemned the violence on Twitter tonight as "unacceptable".
Leftist leader Jean-Luc Melenchon celebrated today's mobilization as "a new page in French social history".
The trade union also announced tonight that it will hold the 10th national mobilization against refunds and reforms on March 28.
(Editor: Yang Zhaoyan) 1120324