Air France managers stripped as employee mob storms HQ over job cuts
Published 05/10/2015 | 17:47
Air France managers had their shirts ripped off as they battled to escape a crowd of angry workers ahead of a meeting about mass job cuts.
Two senior executives of Air France had their shirts ripped off their backs after being cornered by a furious mob protesting against job cuts.
An Associated Press photographer saw about a hundred activists rush into a building where senior members of staff were meeting to discuss massive job losses at the company.
Images show airline human resources and labour relations chief Xavier Broseta being jostled by angry workers as he tried to escape.
Air France-KLM chief executive Alexandre de Juniac announced on Friday that the company would have to cut jobs after failing to reach an agreement with pilots.
French media reported a proposal to slash 2,900 jobs.
Mr de Juniac said the company was being squeezed by low-cost airlines in Europe and Gulf carriers for long-haul flights.
Monday's meeting was intended to detail the cuts, which he told Europe 1 radio would be "significant".
Among those at Monday's protest was Yves Porte, an activist who represents cargo workers.
"At a certain moment the Gulf companies, who have low fuel prices and who receive government subsidies, compete with us. It's impossible, we are not on a level playing field," he said.
Air France said it would file a complaint for aggravated assault.
Although Monday's scuffle was unusually violent, labour relations in France are commonly testy, with unions sometimes even resorting to "boss-napping" to make a point.
France's transport secretary, Alain Vidalies, condemned the violence, saying in a tweet it was "unacceptable and must be punished"