Strikes halted production at two Renault factories on Monday (5 June) as militant car workers defied court orders to end their sit-in.
GV: Striking workers with banners outside factory.
GV & MV: Strikers inside factory -reading papers, talking and playing cards. (4 SHOTS)
CU: Banner and posters proclaiming strikers' `wants'.
GV's: Idle plant. (4 SHOTS)
News of France's first major industrial dispute since the ruling centre-right coalition won legislative elections in March made the French franc loss ground against the dollar on foreign exchange markets.
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Background: Strikes halted production at two Renault factories on Monday (5 June) as militant car workers defied court orders to end their sit-in. Strikers at the state-owned company's factory at Cleon in Normandy voted on Monday to continue a five-day stoppage shortly before a court at Rouen gave them forty-eight hours to leave the plant. A second Renault factory at Flins, near Paris, is also occupied and sympathy strikes have broken out in two other Renault plants.
SYNOPSIS: At Flins, only the pressing shop workers are on strike. They occupied the factory on Friday (2 June) and spent the week-end barricaded inside the building. The Renault management had asked for a court injunction to remove the Flins strikers, on the grounds they were interfering with the right to work. A court at Versailles refused to grant the injunction, but a Rouen court did grant a similar injunction to remove the striking Cleon workers.
Strikers at both plans are demanding wage increasing of up to three hundred francs (about sixty-five dollars) a month, plus shorter working hours, early retirements and a fifth week of paid holiday. At Flins, Renault executives ordered a three-day lock-out in an effort to break the strike. Prime Minister Raymond Barree has said the government would not allow wage rises to exceed the inflation rate. French industry sees the Renault strike as a test case for his incomes policy.