Nationwide strike by Tunisia’s public sector workers

tunisia_strikeTunisian public sector workers ignored an appeal to limit calls for protest by the Tunisian President Beji Caïd Essebsi on Thursday by turning up in their numbers to continue requests for pay rise.

The general strike of the Tunisian public sector workers was well attended on Thursday.

Public schools, public transport and the national airline have been disrupted by this movement, initiated by the powerful trade union centre, UGTT.

Tunisian civil servants and public sector employees are demanding higher salary increases than those proposed by the government. The government proposed 20 euros for 2019 and 30 for 2020.

The union has justified its request citing the decline in purchasing power due to inflation, which reached 7.5% in 2018.

But Tunisia’s Minister of Finance in a televised speech on Wednesday evening assured that the state of public finances will not allow the UGTT’s requests to be accepted.

Youssef Chahed added that negotiations should continue after the 24-hour strike, the first of its kind, affecting both the civil service and public companies, according to the UGTT and historians

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