News has come through today that riot police have occupied the Elliniki Halyvourgia steel plant in Aspropyrgos to end the strike and force the reopening of the factory. This follows clashes between police and strikers on Friday after a 9 month strike. The new Greek coalition government is using riot police to break the resistance of these workers.
The strike started in October 2011 when the factory owner Mr Manessis unilaterally introduced a five hour working day, tore up collective agreements and sacked workers. Since then, the company has escalated the situation by firing 5% of the workforce each month.
The striking workers are demanding the reinstatement of the 120 sacked workers and reject the reduced hours and tearing up of the collective agreement.
Management at the plant has informed the Greek labour ministry that it intends to submit an application for mass dismissal and suspension of activity at the plant.
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