Pickpockets cause strike at the Louvre
John Lichfield has been The Independent's man in Paris since 1997, covering French news. Before that, he was the paper's Foreign Editor and he has also worked in Brussels and Washington. In 1999, he was the UK press Awards Foreign Reporter of the year.
Wednesday 10 April 2013
Gangs of young pickpockets forced the closure of the Louvre museum in Paris today.
Employees went on strike to protest against the presence of “increasingly numerous and aggressive” pickpockets who, they complained, were targeting both visitors and staff. Around 100 workers marched to the ministry of culture, in Palais Royal, to demand tougher government action.
“The staff can’t stand it any longer,” said Christelle Guyader of the left-wing union federation, SUD. “They have been coming to work with fear in their bellies because they are being confronted by organised gangs of increasingly aggressive pickpockets.”
The culture ministry promised to “investigate the problem with the Interior and Justice ministries and try to increase security around the museum”.
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