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Germany

Students, Civil Servants Demonstrate Against Government Plans

Students and civil servants in the German state of Hesse took to the streets on Tuesday to protest the local government's proposals to cut billions from the state budget. Organizers said up to 6,000 students in Frankfurt and 10,000 state-wide took part in demonstrations against plans to introduce university tuition fees of up to €900 per semester for those who fail to graduate within a certain amount of time. Around 6,000 civil servants in the state capital Wiesbaden marched tooting airhorns in protest against increased working hours (from 38.5 currently to 42 hours per week), cuts to Christmas bonus and holiday pay and lay-offs that threaten around 10,000 jobs, according to the local civil servants association. Hesse's finance minister, Karlheinz Weimar, said the measures were necessary to make up for the drastic drop in tax revenues.