Calais: Port Blocked by Sailors of MyFerryLink

General News
Port of Calais blocked by ex employees
Port of Calais blocked by ex employees
The ferry terminal in Calais, still stuck on Sunday night. – Michel Spingler / AP / SIPA

Sailors of Scop SeaFrance, placed in receivership, have once again blocked the port of Calais to recover equipment on older ships of MyFerryLink …

There has been new protests at the Port of Calais by the Staff and Sailors of the Scop SeaFrance that recently went into liquidation. They blocked the port of Calais, for part of the night from Sunday to Monday.  The movement, which began around 7.30pm ended six hours later, around 1.30am.  Maritime traffic could then resume during this bank holiday weekend as this Monday is a public holiday in Britain.

To retrieve equipment

The sailors demanded access up the ramps to the ships of  MyFerryLink, which they had occupied for weeks previously, to retrieve the equipment, according to Eric Vercoutre, secretary general of northern Maritime Union (NMS) of the Scop.

However, the company is in liquidation, and only the liquidator, with which the sailors were being negotiating with according to the prefecture, has authority over the equipment on board.

Employees meeting with Valls

This was “sports equipment, paint, consumables,” according to the union of NMS.  The sailors, themselves, felt that the material stored in these two boats which is about to be sold by the Danish competitor DFDS, should return to Scop.   After long discussions with the administrator, their request was accepted by the prefecture.

Sailors have also got to a meeting with Prime Minister Manuel Valls, who is also visiting Calais, on Monday, to discuss the issue of migrants.

Crucial meeting

This action also involved sailors who are concerned for the future of 487 employees of the Scop. Sailors are still contesting that they have a recovery plan for MyFerryLink by a takeover by employees, as they consider the existing agreement for the takeover by DFDS, as insufficient.

Hijacked ships

Traffic was totally stopped in the harbour, “for security reasons, because of the presence of two boats” which were seated about 25 seamen as Eric Vercoutre, had said the harbour master of the port of Calais.

The event that prevented ferries to dock and from the port, forced them to divert their ships to neighboring ports of Dunkirk for the Danish company DFDS and Boulogne-sur-Mer for the British P & O, with several thousand passengers on board.

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