Thousands of protesters in Lannion against job cuts at Nokia

Demonstration in the streets of Lannion, in the Côtes-d'Armor, Saturday July 4, against the job cuts at Nokia. Damien MEYER / AFP

Text by: RFI Follow

Between 3,500, according to the police, and 5,000 people, according to the CFDT, demonstrated this Saturday in Lannion in the Côtes-d'Armor to protest against the loss of 402 jobs on the Nokia site, which plans in total to cut more than a thousand jobs in France.


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"  Tregor standing up against job cuts  " , "  In ten years, it's the thirteenth plan  " , "  Young people hired, already fired  "  or "  keep Nokia jobs in Lannion  " , could we read on the banners or placards brandished by the demonstrators.

On June 22, Nokia announced its restructuring plan in France with 1,233 job cuts, including 402 in this Breton city of 20,000 inhabitants.

This is the fourth social plan since the acquisition in 2016 of Alcatel-Lucent by Nokia. The three previous plans had touched the support functions whereas, in this fourth plan, it is research and development (R&D) which are concerned " at 95% " , recalled the trade unionists.

For the unions, the current plan will inevitably lead to the disappearance of the Lannion site, which will employ less than 400 employees if it is implemented, but also to the disappearance of Nokia from the French industrial landscape.

"A city that is being murdered"

" It is a betrayal, towards the employees, towards the territory, towards the public authorities (...) the political power must act against these betrayals " , declared Bernard Trémulot, central delegate CFDT. With the departure of Nokia, " Lannion, historic stronghold of telecommunications, lose part of its identity " , it does said during a speech made before the start of the event.

Pauline, 24, who came from Marseille two years ago to settle in Lannion to work at Nokia, expressed her disappointment. Like her, more than 200 young engineers have been recruited on this site since its acquisition by Nokia in 2016. 

" It’s almost a city that we are murdering somewhere, because it’s the city’s third employer who is almost on the verge of liquidating its site, " Lannion mayor Paul Le Bihan told AFP. (PS). " It is intolerable. A city of 20,000 cannot cash in on this kind of plan, " he said. These 402 redundancies are " unjustified, incomprehensible, intolerable and unbearable, " summed up a union member.

In the demonstration, which ended around 1 p.m., several elected officials wearing their tricolor scarves were present. But also representatives of the Hop! de Morlaix (Finistère), a few tens of kilometers away, threatened with closure with 276 job cuts.

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