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UPDATE: French air traffic controllers announce three more strike days

The French air traffic controllers' union has announced three extra strike days - in addition to the strike on Friday which has seen 1,000 flights cancelled.

UPDATE: French air traffic controllers announce three more strike days
Photo by STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN / AFP

The SNCTA union, the main union that represents air traffic controllers, has declared its intention to strike on Friday, September 16th in a dispute over pay and working conditions.

The Direction générale de l’aviation civile (DGAC) has asked airlines to cancel half of all their flights in and out of France on Friday, and is recommending that passengers postpone their travel plans, due to the likelihood of “severe” disruption.

In total 1,000 flights have been cancelled – click HERE for full details.

The strike notice runs from Friday, September 16th at 6am to Saturday, September 17th at 6am, although it is likely that flights over the weekend will also be disrupted as airlines deal with the knock-on effects.

The SNCTA has since announced three more strike days – on Wednesday, September 28th, Thursday, September 29th and Friday, September 30th.

The full scale of the disruption for those days is not yet known, cancellations will be announced nearer the time, so check our travel page HERE for updates.

The September 16th strike notice covers all airports in France, as well as French overseas territories such as the Caribbean islands of Martinique and Gaudeloupe.

READ ALSO Your rights on delayed or cancelled flights in France

The DGAC said it is in discussions with the Eurocontrol aviation traffic manager to propose alternative routes for airlines to avoid French airspace.

The SNCTA said for its part that the strike was a response to severe inflation that is eroding spending power of its members, and worries about “future recruitment.”

The move comes as the French government is preparing to unveil its 2023 budget, which the union says fails to guarantee the DGAC’s financing and could limit its its ability to offer pay hikes.

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BREAKING

French novelist Annie Ernaux wins Sweden’s Nobel Literature Prize

The French novelist Annie Ernaux has won this year's Nobel Prize in Literature, the Swedish Academy accounced at a press conference on Thursday afternoon.

French novelist Annie Ernaux wins Sweden's Nobel Literature Prize
Announcing the award, Mats Malm, Permanent Secretary of the Swedish Academy, said that Ernaux, 82, was being given the prize “for the courage and clinical acuity with which she uncovers the roots, estrangements and collective restraints of personal memory”.
In a press release, the Academy praised the writer for “consistently and from different angles”, examining “a life marked by strong disparities regarding gender, language and class”. 
The Academy were unable to contact Ernaux in advance to inform her she had won, which meant she received the news at the same time as the rest of the world.
“I was very surprised,” she told Swedish public broadcaster SVT. “It’s a great honour and a great responsibility.”
“It’s a great responsibility to portray a kind of justice in relation to the world, not only through my writing.”
Ernaux told SVT she had not yet had the chance to tell her children, grandchildren or publisher that she had been awarded the prise, but she thanked Sweden and the Swedish Academy.
“Of course I will come to Stockholm and hold a speech, as I should.”
The Nobel Prize comes with a medal and a prize sum of 10 million Swedish kronor (about $911,400).
Last year, the award went to Tanzanian-born novelist Abdulrazak Gurnah, whose work focuses on the plight of refugees and exile, colonialism and racism.
Ernaux’s name has circulated in Nobel speculation for several years. She was the bookmaker’s favourite to win the prize in 2021, but was eclipsed by Canada’s Anne Carson, Salman Rushdie, Michel Houellebecq, Haruki Murakami, Margaret Atwood, and Stephen King in this year’s odds. 
She is the 17th woman to win the prestigious prize, out of 119 literature laureates since the first Nobel was awarded in 1901.
The Swedish Academy has in recent years pledged to make the prize more diverse, after a 2017-18 #MeToo scandal that left it in tatters.
Ernaux will receive the Nobel from King Carl XVI Gustaf at a formal ceremony in Stockholm on December 10, the anniversary of the 1896 death of scientist Alfred Nobel who created the prizes in his last will and testament.
 

The Swedish Academy was long plagued by suspected leaks, but is known for cloak-and-dagger methods to try to keep its musings and preparatory Nobel work under wraps. Its deliberations are also sealed for 50 years.

It is known to have a longlist that is whittled down throughout the year to a shortlist of five names, before the 18 members vote on a winner.

After Thursday’s announcement, the Nobel season continues on Friday with the highly-anticipated Peace Prize, the only Nobel announced in the Norwegian capital Oslo. Punters have suggested this year’s prize could sound the alarm over the war in Ukraine or the climate. The Economics Prize wraps things up on Monday, October 10th.

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