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More Workers Joining General Strike of Civil Servants in Israel

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A general strike by nearly 200,000 civil servants, which began Sunday, spread today to employes of the Jewish Agency, the World Zionist Organization and other institutions.

Employes of nurseries run by various women’s organizations will join the work stoppage tomorrow. Kindergarten and elementary school teachers are planning a one-day strike Thursday and the non-teaching staffs at universities said they would strike for an indefinite period, beginning next Monday.

The strike, originally limited to municipal workers and employes of town councils and rural and urban agencies, was called by Histadrut to force the Finance Ministry to agree to wage increases to compensate for the erosion of real income by triple-digit inflation. Histadrut is also demanding increased cost-of-living allowances.

The labor federation warned Sunday that the strike will be “open-ended,” meaning that it would continue “until the government signs new wage contracts.” A two-day warning strike two weeks ago was observed by some 400,000 civil employes, about a third of Israel’s work force.

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