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Italian rail workers stage stoppage

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Italian rail workers stage stoppage

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Travellers in Italy are facing disruptions after train workers walked off the job. The 24-hour stoppage, which began last night, is the second of its kind, as rail workers push the government to spend more on safety after a train crash last month killed 17 people. The rail workers defied the transport minister, Pietro Lunardi, who ordered them to postpone and shorten their protest. “We’re not asking for money,” said one Trenitalia employee. “We’re asking for safety- for us the workers and above all for passengers. “

Five rail workers were among the victims of January’s head-on collision between a passenger train and a freight train near Bologna. A traveller in Rome this morning said: “I understand them, it’s only right that they want safety but they could have thought of it a little earlier. This is a mess.”

Yesterday flight attendants staged a four-hour strike over contract renewals at Italy’s flag carrier Alitalia. A total of 101 Alitalia flights were cancelled, most of them international. Ground crews at airports across the country also held a protest on Thursday over working conditions, causing delays and some cancellations on other airlines.