France hit by second day of strike disruption

STORY: Strike action brought more disruption to France on Wednesday (March 8).

Refinery deliveries were suspended at TotalEnergies

While electricity output was reduced and train services hit.

It comes a day after a nationwide day of industrial action brought record numbers of people onto the streets.

Around 1.28 million took part in a sixth day of protests Tuesday (March 7).

They marched against a draft law that would see the pension age delayed by two years to 64.

The action comes at a key moment, as President Emmanuel Macron wants parliament to adopt his plan before April.

Olivier Veran is a French government spokesman.

"We condemn the statements that call to bring our economy down to its knees, because these statements are irresponsible, and because the only thing that we want to bring down to its knees is unemployment. And so, we remain open or even eager for dialogue."

Unions are trying to pressure authorities with prolonged strikes in some sectors, including at TotalEnergies oil refineries.

Total said more than half of its 269 refinery workers on shift Wednesday were on strike.

Energy firm EDF said French power production was reduced by almost a fifth on Wednesday morning.

Railway traffic was still affected by the strike, though not as much as the day before.

Transport Minister Clement Beaune said transport would be disrupted through Thursday (March 9) and Friday (March 10).

He also said Paris' main airport would see about 20% fewer flights.