French strikes could affect UK flights
Tags: fuel shortage, gatwick airport, Heathrow airport, luton airport, stansted airport
UK airports like Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton could be affected by a possible fuel shortage as French workers continue to strike over President Nicolas Sarkozy’s plans to raise the national retirement age from 60 to 62.
Fuel shortages could occur after workers blockaded a dozen refineries and numerous oil depots in France last week in protest of the government’s plan.
It could affect UK-bound flights departing from France’s main airports, and no resolution is thought to be in the offing as the government remained defiant despite the widespread disruption.
Prime minister Francois Fillon said: “I won’t let the French economy suffer from a supply blockage.
“The right to strike isn’t the right to stop access to a fuel depot. That’s an illegal action.”
Mr Fillon spoke hours after workers’ unions vowed to do all they could to get President Sarkozy to withdraw his plan or at least compromise before Wednesday’s Senate vote.
Rail unions called for new transport strikes to coincide with a sixth round of nationwide demonstrations after weekend unrest saw at least 825,000 people take to the streets.
Meanwhile, transport minister Dominique Bussereau told Europe-1 radio that he was not concerned about airport fuel supplies, indicating that Charles De Gaulle Paris International Airport was now “perfectly fed” after fuel began flowing again.
Copyright Press Association 2010