PARIS: France's Senate, the upper house of its parliament, approved a contentious reform to the nation's pension system, a move being considered a win for President Emmanuel Macron during his second presidential term.
Senators passed the reforms by 195 votes to 112, bringing the package another step towards becoming law.
The vote came hours after hundreds of thousands of people again marched in protest in rallies across the country, but in significantly fewer numbers than expected.
“An important stage has been passed,” Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne told AFP after the vote, adding that she believed the government had a parliamentary majority to get the reforms passed into law.
A committee will now hammer out a final draft, which will then be submitted to both houses of parliament for a final vote.
Should Macron’s government fail to assemble a majority ahead of the vote, Borne could deploy a rarely used and highly controversial constitutional tool, known as article 49/3, to push the legislation through without a vote.