Bolivia turns its soldiers into bread makers during 48-hour bakers' strike - video

The bakers were protesting against the scrapping of a government subsidy on flour

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The Independent US

A strike by bakers in Bolivia has seen the government turn to its soldiers to help combat the nation’s bread shortage.

The government called in troops to become makeshift bread makers after bakers went on a 48-hour strike to protest against the government’s decision to scrap subsidies on wheat flour.

Watch the video below to see soldiers swap camouflage for aprons in the kitchens of La Paz:

Development Minister Veronic Ramos said: “We have, indeed, suffered some shortages. But we will produce 70,000 rolls today and we have the capacity to increase this output if necessary.”

The strike began on Monday, and saw bakers take to the streets across Bolivia’s major cities to protest against the government's scrapping of the flour subsidies.

According to the bakers, the removal of the subsidy has doubled the cost of flour and severely impacted on their profits.

The government has said that an abundance of cheap flour from neighbouring Argentina has meant that flour prices have remained low.

Speaking at the announcement of the removal of the subsidies, Ms Ramos said: “Bolivian bakers have benefitted from subsidies for many years. They are strong now and can walk with their own legs.”

Bakers.jpgBread is a staple diet of many Bolivians and the government have described the decision to strike by bakers as a “national emergency”.

The decision to scrap flour subsidies is the second attempt to take away a government subsidy in the last few years.

In 2011, president Evo Morales attempted to remove a government fuel subsidy, but after fervent nationwide protests he decided to reverse his decision.