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Protests in France continue against pension reform: “Retirement not a waiting room for death”

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Public transport, schools and refinery supplies were disrupted in France on Tuesday as trade unions led a third wave of nationwide strikes a day after pension reform legislation began its bumpy passage through parliament, which said people must work two years longer — meaning until the age of 64 for most.

“For me, retirement is a second life, not a waiting room for death. With this reform, retirement will become a waiting room to die, and that's outrageous because you need to work in order to live and not live to work,” pensioner Bernard Chevalier said from Nice.

In cities such as Nantes and Paris, police fired tear gas at demonstrations as scuffles between protesters and police broke out amid largely peaceful demonstrations. Protesters dressed in black and wearing hoods were seen throwing projectiles towards riot police.

The French spend the largest number of years in retirement among OECD countries — a deeply cherished benefit that a substantial majority are reluctant to give up, polls show.

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