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French Senate ratifies Italy-France high-speed rail link

Senate vote comes after passage in House

19 November, 18:53
French Senate ratifies Italy-France high-speed rail link (ANSA) - Paris, November 19 - The French Senate on Tuesday approved the French-Italian bilateral agreement to build the controversial high-speed TAV rail link between Lyon and Turin.

The vote seals French ratification of the agreement after passage in the Lower House on Thursday.

The Lyon-Turin high-speed link in the Susa Valley has triggered protests throughout Italy for several years, some involving violent clashes with police, vandalism, threats and disruption of highway traffic.

Opponents say the project threatens sensitive environmental areas and will cost too much public money, while supporters argue it will cut down on vehicle traffic and pollution.

Excavation work began November 12 on a large exploratory tunnel as part of rail construction.

Proponents of the link said by reaching this stage of construction, it's clear that the project has gone too far now to be halted.