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Saada slams Canal+ strike action

A strike by staff at Canal+ news channel iTele has spread to the broadcaster’s main pay TV service, with a reported 65 staff at the channel coming out in support of the news staff.

Canal+ CEO Maxime Saada issued a statement to the effect that a symbolic strike had been voted for about 30 staff and that it did not have the backing of the group’s 7,000 staff and collaborators.

The strike action followed an announcement that Canal+ was revamping its offering, including reducing the number of free-to-air unencrypted hours on its main channel from an average of five a day to two.

Key Canal+ show Zapping and investigative journalist show Special Investigation will no longer be available from September.

Canal+ has also told French press that the impact of the strike is likely to be limited by the fact that key free-to-air programmes Le Grand Journal and Le Petit Journal have now finished their seasons.

iTele staff went on strike three days ago, with the news channel airing a mix of archive reports from the last few months.