The Italian cabinet has unanimously approved a draft law to restrict strikes in the transport sector.
The new legislation will require trade unions to win the backing of 50 percent of the workforce if the strike is to go ahead. The move is an attempt by the government to end the hundreds of stoppages that hit the sector last year, many related to the sale of carrier Alitalia. The government claims it is not its intention to deprive workers of the right to strike but to ensure that the action has adequate backing before the disruption takes place. A commission that monitors industrial action said in 2008 413 bus and metero strikes, 301 airline and 216 train strikes were called, a third were cancelled at the last minute.