Anti-austerity protest sweep across Belgium

World Today

A policeman looks on as workers of the public services main trade unions gather for a demonstration on May 31, 2016 in Brussels. Christian democrat union ACV-CSC and Socialist union ACOD-CGSP of the public services were striking and holding a demonstration today against measures introduced by the Federal Government. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / LAURIE DIEFFEMBACQ / Belgium OUT

Massive protests in Belgium have disrupted the much of the country’s transportation.

CCTV’s Kevin Ozebek has more from Brussels.
Follow Kevin Ozebek on Twitter @KevinOzebek

Anti-austerity protest sweep across Belgium

Thousands take to the street to protest against budget cuts and a rise in the retirement age.

An estimated 10,000 gathered and marched in the heart of Brussels on Tuesday.

They were mostly teachers, police officers, and public sector employees protesting against budget cuts and a rise in the retirement age.

“Our pension has to stay the same as it is now. They want to reduce it, I think, by 500 Euros per month. So, that’s not acceptable to us,” Katelyn Schmitz, a protester, said.

The demonstration remained peaceful unlike last week’s protest in Brussels, which turned violent. At least 20 were injured.

Meanwhile, in neighboring France anger over new labor laws have led to additional union strikes that will affect train travel.

Anger over new French labor laws that make it easier for companies to hire and fire employees have led to fuel shortages as refinery workers remain on strike.

In France, a national railway strike is set for Wednesday but Paris metro workers will protest on Thursday.