ORLEANS, France, March 24 Workers at a French
pharmaceutical factory took their manager hostage on Tuesday in
a protest over planned job cuts, police said.
The employees are demanding improved layoff terms after the
company said it wanted to make 110 of the 235 staff redundant at
the 3M site in Pithiviers, south of Paris, because of falling
"If they want to reorganise their business, let them pay for
it," union representative Jean-Francois Caparros told reporters.
The move follows a similar incident at a Sony (6758.T)
factory in southwest France earlier this month, when angry
employees detained the chief executive and human resources
director of the Japanese group's French arm overnight at its
plant at Pontonx-sur-l'Adour to secure improved layoff terms.
France is the sixth biggest market for U.S. technology group
3M with 2007 sales of more than a billion euros. It employs
2,800 staff in the country with eight industrial sites,
according to the group's website.
(Reporting by Mourad Guichard)