Egypt's Mahalla textile workers end ten-day strike

Ahram Online , Sunday 1 Nov 2015

A file photo of a strike by Mahalla workers last year (Photo: Mai Shaheen)

Following a ten-day strike, thousands of workers at Egypt's largest textile factory, Mahalla for Spinning and Weaving, resumed work on Sunday, a factory worker told Ahram Online on the phone.

Since last week, around 14,000 workers have been on strike to demand payment of their annual social bonus, denied by the ministry of finance for the first time in almost three decades.

"Workers will resume the strike if official papers granting them the social bonus are not published within 48 hours," factory worker Mohamed El-Attar said.

"But we are expecting that the paper is ready and will be published soon," he added.

In September, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi issued a decree to pay state employees a social bonus of 10 percent of their basic salaries, starting from the July salaries. The decree excludes the six million employees who are subject to the social services law.

The regulations and specifications of the decree were issued by the ministry of finance the same week, excluding public sector workers from the bonus.

But the government later announced the social bonus would include textile workers with the exception of Mahalla Spinning and Weaving and Kafr El-Dawar, who later joined the strike, unless they end their strikes.

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