France: more universities vote to strike

Rail workers and students march in Nantes

Information is at a premium, with official channels giving reports that do not tally with experiences on the ground, with actions going unreported or unconfirmed.

Submitted by jef costello on November 16, 2007

There were votes for strike action today at Bourgogne, Amiens and Lille II universities. Filtered barrages were voted for at Paris XII, Orleans and Chambery.

Today, for the first time in Rennes II's 40-year history, police were used against students. Some 300 CRS and gendarmes were used against some 50 students occupying buildings. The president of the university justified the intervention on the grounds that the AG he had called had voted against the blockade, the legitimacy of this AG has been called into question.

In Grenoble 100 students attempting an occupation were evicted, a student delegation also attended rail-workers' AG today and joined EDF workers at a demonstration on Wednesday.

Lyon II, police did not attempt to lift the blocakade at the smaller Quais campus during the day but moved in at around 10pm and drove out some 100 students. The blockade and occupation of Bron campus is still holding. At the Sorbonne, some 150 occupiers were forced out by riot police at around 10pm this evening. The CRS were sent into Nantes university to end an occupation that was entering it's fifth night. There are also reports that one of the Toulouse campuses have seen police attacks this evening to end occupations.

Montpellier: students, schoolchildren and rail, gas and electricity workers held a demonstration outside the prefecture, with a delegation of rail-workers going in. Two right-wing students began speaking to a journalist, one of them exchanged a few blows with a demonstrator and both of them ran off. As a result three demonstrators were arrested several hours later.

In Rouen students blockaded the train station on Tuesday.

Lille, Lycée Fénélon voted to strike, two parisian lycées also voted for strike action but further information is not available.

Teaching staff at Nanterre and Lille I have officially voted to condemn the new law and repression of the student movement. Many universities have already done this in AGs.

Officially 26 campuses are blockaded, 7 are on strike or have filtered barrages, 4 are closed administratively and one has been evacuated (Rennes II)

According to independent media sources there are strikes and blockades at the following 41 universities:

Aix-Marseille - has since been closed administratively
Bordeaux II
Bordeaux III
Grenoble I
Grenoble II - closed administratively
Le Havre
La Roche sur Yon
La Rochelle - law students demanded a secret ballot and then a recount. One of them did a recount, the original count was correct.
Lille I
Lille II
Lille III
Lyon II
Montpellier II
Montpellier III
Nancy II
Paris I Tolbiac - occupied
Paris III
Paris IV Clignancourt campus
Paris IV Sorbonne campus - occupation ended by riot police
Paris VIII St Denis - occupied
Paris X Nanterre
Paris XIII Villetaneuse
Rennes II
Toulouse II
Toulouse III

At a couple of these universities blockades are partial. Paris VII has voted to begin striking on Monday and a motion for strikes and blockades at Paris IV Malesherbes was defeated by a dozen votes at an AG today. Arras and Avignon held AG for which results are not yet available. Several other universities have filtered barrages or other action ongoing. There are 85 universities in France.