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Disruption continues after travellers end French motorway blockade


France

Disruption continues after travellers end French motorway blockade

A group of travellers who blocked one of Europe’s busiest motorways in northern France have ended their protest after the authorities gave in to their demands.

The barriers were lifted on the A1 at Roye about 100 kilometres north of Paris late on Saturday morning.

But the road was expected to remain closed or severely restricted until the evening to allow for repairs.

About 60 travellers set up their barricades on Friday night, blocking the motorway between Paris and Lille in both directions. It caused long delays for motorists who included British, Belgian and Dutch holidaymakers returning home.

The protesters’ demand was for a member of their community, imprisoned for organised car crime, to be released to attend his father’s funeral.

The dead man was one of four people including a policeman and a baby who were killed in a shooting at a travellers’ camp last week.

After 14 hours the blockade was lifted when a judge ruled that the jailed man could be freed for the funeral.

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