French railway workers storm Ecological Transformation Ministry in Paris

French railway workers stormed the Ecological Transformation Ministry’s building Tuesday in Paris to protest a restructuring plan for the freight transportation unit of the French railway company, SNCF.

Workers entered the building in the La Defense neighbourhood and expressed their dissent by using torches.

Demonstrators, who were protesting the restructuring proposal of SNCF’s freight transport division, SNCF Fret, chanted: “SNCF is not for sale” and said they disagreed with the proposal, which would result in laying off 500 employees.

Police intervened and evicted the protestors from the premises.

SNCF Fret has been instructed by the EU Commission to repay €5.3 billion ($5.6 billion) in aid it received between 2007 and 2019.

To avoid having to pay, SNCF Fret has implemented a restructuring plan for the concerned unit as devised by the SNCF management.

The plan involves relocating 20% of SNCF Fret’s activities to competitors.

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