French riot police prepares to disperse refinery workers holding a blockade of the oil depot of Douchy-Les-Mines to protest against the government's proposed labor reforms. The unemployment rate in the country is the highest in 17 years — it exceeded 10% and reached 24% among young people. To encourage the businessmen to employ more people the government is planning to cancel the obligatory 35-hour working week, make short-term employment contracts more common and laying people off and cutting salaries easier. Although the trade unions acknowledge the need for reforms, some suggestions of the government were taken very negatively. The clashes between the activists and the police have been happening all over the country for three months and are in the way of hosting European Football Championship in France.

Photo: Francois Lo Presti / AFP / East News

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