Sarajevo - Tuzla / Bosnia - Monday 14th April
The press conference at Sarajevo, Monday morning, 14th April, was somewhat disrupted by the Pope's visit taking place at the same time. However, news items were transmitted to different radio and television channels which retransmitted the news items (with Carol Faure, an unemployed activist of the French association). Still Monday morning, things going very well at Tuzla, a working- class and multi-ethnic town. Meetings took place with the miners' union, then on to the hospital, with Xavier Rousselin, from CGT Onic, and for the European Coordination. Later Carol and Xavier met the postmen at 14h.00 -their union was the first independent union to be created about four months ago. A union march took place in the town's streets, the first time such an event had occurred since the war. A ceremony took place in Kapija square, with people leaving bouquets of flowers at the spot where 71 people died, mostly young people, in May 1995. A wreath was laid in the name of the March. Eight Bosnians are to join the French march to Amsterdam in the middle of May. All that remains to be done is to get the visas.
Dublin / Ireland -Monday 14th April
The future march is due to set off in June. An official launch of the march took place in front of the European Commission Offices in Dublin. The rally was well covered by the media, with interviews of marchers, INOU officiels and with Christopher Aguiton for the European Coordination.
Brussels / Belguim - Monday 14th April
On Monday, while waiting for the march to pass through Belgium, Belgian marchers and other groups invited themselves for a little visit to the officies of Mr Jacques Santer, President of the European Commission. His office is well known to the unemployed, as it is on the way to the local job centre in Etterbeck where they have to sign on. Many associations were there, the Front des Sans Abris (Homeless), les Compagnons du partage, le Syndicat de locataires (tenants association), the Commission jeune de la Marche europ�enne (Youth M.E.), and a local respresentative of the CSC. A delegation was received, where an unemployed worker symbolically offered a pair of used sneakers, worn down in the fruitless search for jobs to Mr Jacques Santer. The Belgian delegation also informed Mr Jacques Santer, that the European March is due in Brussels in May, and that it will make a special stop in Vilvoorde. The delegation assured him that they would certainly get in touch with him soon so as to join them in setting up a debat.
Toulouse/France - Monday 14th April
The European March will leave Toulouse on the 1st Mai. But as a kind of rehearsal, a demonstration and a squat was organised for the badly-housed by various associations, : the Mid-Pyrenees March group,(TO7, AC!Sud, DAL, UTC, APEIS-Cahors, Inform'elles, Culture and Lib�rt�, CGT Comit� de Ch�meurs, Groupe des 10, with the support of FSU, UD-CFDT, SGEN-CFDT). A subsidiary of Usinor- Sacilor was symbolically occupied for one night. A rally against the privatisation of France-Telecom also took place.
Brest March /France - Monday 14th April
The Brest March Diary is being written up by Michel Cochet who communicates the energy and enthusiasm of those on the Brest part of the march. Here in brief is what he has noted : Monday, the 3rd day of the march. Stopped at the Nobel de Pont de Buis factory. Reception given by Sud Chimie, followed by a reception given by the local town hall. Then we continued marching on to Chateaulin. We suspended a banner over the motorway bridge which was cheered by lorry drivers. After a reception at the town hall, a debat was held in the evening on local taxes with the tax union, SNUI, and a representative of the Confederation of Small Farmers of South Finistere. There are fifteen permanent marchers on the Brest march.
Le Mans / France - Monday 14th April
The group of Le Mans (AC!,ASDEIC Bouloire, ASTRE Le Mans and La Fl�che, Federation of Small Farmers, FSU, SUD-PTT, SNUI, Une Terre Humaine, CSF, JOC, Atams, CCQS, JAC, Paij) arranged a meeting in front of the local job centre (ANPE), to speak about the European March. A programme of initiatives has been organised for the region, which will include going to Alen�on on Labour Day, 1st May, to meet up with the Brest part of the March
Grenoble March / France - 12th April
On Tuesday evening, a reception was held for the marchers at the Chambery town hall. The mayor is a former socialist minister. The marchers met a tenant living in local council housing (HLM) under the threat of eviction at the end of the month. The order was made by the local town hall! At first they refused to reconsider their decision. But faced with the threat by the marchers to camp in front of the local town hall, the tenant was swiftly promised rehousing. Local groups have promised to keep on a eye on the tenant's case and to look after her.On Wednesday morning, there was an occupation of the local job centre (ANPE) of Chambery, to demand the right to put up notices by local unemployment groups; a meeting was held and tactics discussed with them. Later in the day, there was a visit to Trivalor business premises.
Murcia / Spain - Wednesday -16th April
The actual departure of the Spanish march took place today at Murcia with two hundred marchers on route for Alicante. The march will then go in the direction of Perpignan, France. There are six French marchers, including two marchers trained to take video recordings of the march. The first important stop will be Barcelona, where a debat is scheduled on the rights of immigrants. Representatives from French immigrants and anti- racists groups plan to be if they can. The Catalan committee of the March is made up of trade unionists (CGT, Barcelona Workers Committees, Federation of Catalan Workers, etc.), associations (civic plateform for social rights, immigrant federations, Kairos, Soldarity Associations House, many youth organisations, the Assembly of unsuppressives, squat groups), and political organisations (the Greens, Catalonia Communist Party ...)