Thousands take to the streets in Zaragoza, Spain to protest against the possible closure of the local Opel car plant.
A full or partial shutdown could mean the loss of thousands of jobs in the area and unions have threatened strike action if plans persist. Two of those on the demonstration explained why they took part. “We are calling for business plan for the future and if we don’t get one the plant and all the workers in the area will simply vanish.” “ Everyone here is worried about job losses in the region. It has nothing to do with ideology the plant is in danger and we are on the streets to defend it.” German Chancellor Angela Merkel is under fire from Britain, Belgium and Spain for backing GM’s plan to sell off its German arm Opel to Canada’s Magna and Russian partner Sberbank along with a 4.5 billion euro incentive. The deal looks set to save 25,000 jobs in Germany but across Europe things look more fragile. As a result the EU’s competition commission is planning a detailed analysis of German actions following complaints from member states. The EU’s executive body added it will be “attentive” to the “social consequences” of the sale as it comes to a conclusion about its legality.