Strike closes airports in Cyprus

 

Airports and government offices in Cyprus have shut down at the start of a day-long strike by a civil servants' union and air traffic controllers in protest at a wage freeze and other spending cuts.

The rare stoppage has forced the cancellation of 79 flights to and from the east Mediterranean island. Around 16,000 government workers belonging to the PASYDY union have also walked out.

State-run hospitals are operating on reduced staff, but other essential services including police remain unaffected.

Union leaders called today's strike in reaction to not being consulted about the deficit-fighting measures aimed at restoring investor confidence in the eurozone country.

Air traffic controllers are protesting at not being exempt from the two-year wage freeze.

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