More than million join France protest: police

19th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

More than a million people joined protest marches Tuesday against a pensions reform in France, the government said, while unions put the figure at 3.5 million.

The interior ministry estimated that 1.1 million people turned out, fewer than the last comparable day of protests, on the sixth day of coordinated nationwide actions against raising the retirement age from 60 to 62.

The CGT, France's biggest union, told AFP it estimated overall turnout at 3.5 million, equal to its estimate for the October 12 marches. Unions' estimates have habitually been several times higher than those of police.

The interior ministry, basing its estimate on a police count, said turnout was down from a figure of 1.23 million on the last weekday demonstrations on October 12.

Unions oppose the retirement reform which they say places an unfair burden on workers and have offered alternative proposals to lower France's public deficit.

© 2010 AFP

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