Sarkozy orders breaking of all fuel blockades
French President Nicolas Sarkozy Wednesday ordered police to break the blockades at all fuel depots blocked by protests against his pensions reform, he said in a statement.
"I gave instructions yesterday to unblock all of the fuel depots in order to return the situation to normal as soon as possible," Sarkozy said in the statement.
Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux said earlier Wednesday that three depots were peacefully reopened overnight, as the government refused to back down on the reform to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62.
Protestors have blockaded several more depots however, police and AFP reporters said.
"In recent days lots of French people have had their daily lives disrupted by supply problems which have affected some of the service stations," Sarkozy said.
"If it is not stopped quickly, this disorder which is aimed at paralysing the country could have consequences for jobs by damaging the normal running of economic activity," he added.
"This disorder penalises the most vulnerable of the French people and those who are responsible for doing health and safety work for the common good."
© 2010 AFP