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Argentina lorry drivers' strike threatens fuel supplies


Argentina

Argentina lorry drivers' strike threatens fuel supplies

Amid fears of petrol shortages, Argentina has ordered its military police to take control of fuel depots after a crippling strike by lorry drivers.

The powerful drivers’ union, which called the three-day action in a dispute over pay, has refused talks with the government.

The walk-out has led to clashes at picket lines and long queues at petrol stations in the capital Buenos Aires as consumers stock up.

Drivers say they want a 30 percent pay increase linked to Argentina’s current 25 percent annual inflation.

“I think the government is a bit nervous and all we want them to do is listen to the workers’ demands, not just for a 30 percent raise, but what we’ve been saying over a year,” said Pablo Moyano, Secretary-General of the Truck Drivers’ Union.

The strike comes weeks after the government seized the country’s biggest oil company YPF.

President Cristina Fernandez returned early from a UN conference in Brazil to deal with the walkout.

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