Thousands Protest Opel Plant Closing In Belgium

ANTWERP, Belgium (AP) -- Thousands of demonstrators have gathered outside Opel's auto plant in the hope of preventing the closing of the operation by Opel's new owners, Canadian company Magna International.

Union workers from Germany joined their Belgian counterparts at the plant on Wednesday. Klaus Franz, chairman of the European Employee Forum of General Motors says employees of Opel plants across Europe will fight all plans by Magna to close any of Opel's plants in Germany, Spain, Britain, Poland or Antwerp.

Organizers say some 5,000 protesters were expected to participate. Opel employs some 49,000 workers across Europe, some 2,000 in Antwerp.

GM has said work at the Antwerp plant could be wound down and that some production at Zaragoza, Spain could be moved to Eisenach, in Germany.

More in Labor