French Left takes united stance against Macron's pension reform plans


On January 10th, Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne formally unveiled President Emmanuel Macron's plans to reform the pension system, the key plank of which is to raise the legal age of retirement in France from 62 to 64 by 2030. Almost immediately trade unions announced a day of strikes and protest on January 19th. Meanwhile prominent figures on the French Left attended a political meeting arranged by independent media Reporterre and 'Fakir', to demonstrate their anger towards the reforms. As Mathieu Dejean reports, the need for unity was a theme of the evening, with calls for the Left to remain united against the proposals – and on other issues – heavily applauded by the audience.

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A clear theme emerged from a meeting of the French Left at the Olympe-de-Gouges hall in Paris on the evening of Tuesday January 10th. Not only was the Left, faced with the pension reform proposals set out a few hours earlier by prime minister Élisabeth Borne, once again united,  but appeals from the stage for the various leftwing and green political parties to set aside petty differences were greeted with loud applause.