France pension protests: Protesters storm luxury giant LVMH

Paris (CNN) Protesters forced their way into the luxury giant’s Paris headquarters LVMHAs France witnessed a new round of demonstrations in protest against the government’s plans to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64.

“If Macron wants to find money to fund the pension system, he needs to come here to find it,” union leader Fabien Felidoux told CNN affiliate BFMTV outside the LVMH building.

The protests came on the day that LVMH – which owns brands such as Louis Vuitton and Mo√ęt – jumped to a record high.

Paris Police Chief Laurent Nunez warned in advance that demonstrators may “strike, often against what they see as capitalist signs,” speaking on French radio RMC.

Up to 600,000 people are expected to demonstrate across France on Thursday against pension reforms in the latest protests, which come a day before a crucial court ruling on the constitutionality of the divisive law.

Striking railway workers storm the headquarters of French luxury group LVMH on Thursday in Paris.

French President Emmanuel Macron argues that reforms are needed to rein in public finances, and this week he remained steadfast, saying “the country must keep moving forward.”

Speaking at a crematorium line near Paris on Thursday morning, Sophie Binet, the new president of the French General Unions, one of France’s main unions, insisted: “As long as pension reform is not withdrawn, mobilization will continue one way or another.”

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo expressed her support for the demonstrators ahead of the new round of protests.

“On the eve of the decision of the Constitutional Council, I once again support the movements in Paris and everywhere in France,” Hidalgo wrote on Twitter.

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“This reform is unfair and violent. The French have been calling for withdrawal for months, and the government must listen to them,” she wrote.

Demonstrators gain entry inside the LVMH headquarters during a demonstration against pension reform in central Paris.

Friday’s ruling will be decisive on the continuation of the protests. The CFDT, France’s other major federation, was more willing to negotiate a settlement.

Meanwhile, rubbish is also set to fill the streets of Paris again as garbage collectors and incinerator workers strike again, according to the CGT union.

The general secretary of the CGT union branch confirmed in a letter to the Mayor of Paris that this would be a continuous strike.

The previous strike, which lasted nearly a month, to the end of March, saw the accumulation of 10,000 tons of rubbish across the capital at its worst.

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