French pension protest forces the Louvre to close its doors


Trade union protesters angered over President Emmanuel Macron's move to raise the retirement age without a final vote in parliament blocked the Louvre museum in Paris on Monday, frustrating crowds of visitors.

Demonstrating peacefully over Macron's plans to make most French work an extra two years to 64 to balance the pension budget, several dozen protesters gathered at the foot of the Louvre's glass pyramid. One banner read "Retire at 60 - work less to live longer."

A queue of disappointed tourists snaked through the courtyard.

"It's a shame we can't get in", one tourist from Australia said, but added, "I can understand those people who have political reasons."

The protest comes a day ahead of a 10th round of nationwide strikes and street marches and following violence in cities across France over the pension system changes.

Separately, Paris police said it was carrying out an operation to prevent unauthorised gatherings in front of the Centre Pomopidou, another landmark museum in Paris.

A Louvre tour guide came out to address the visitors. "We hope you understand our reasons," she said.

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