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Norway power strike called off after government intervenes
May 16, 2013 / 8:16 PM / in 4 years

Norway power strike called off after government intervenes

OSLO, May 16 (Reuters) - Norwegian electricity power and grid workers will return to work after the government intervened to make them end a strike that threatened to cause nationwide blackouts, the Labour Ministry said on Thursday.

“The ministry has urged the parties to return to work, and the parties have confirmed that they will do so,” a spokeswoman for the ministry said after meeting the parties. The strike lasted more than two weeks and involved some 3,500 workers.

The government can step in to stop a strike if it threatens human lives, vital infrastructure or national interests.

The EL&IT Forbundet union first called a strike on April 29 for 80 members who seek to sign a collective agreement with IT infrastructure company Atea. On May 7, it expanded the action to 3,000 members at regional power companies that are customers of Atea.

As of Tuesday, workers at Statnett, which manages high-voltage transmission lines and power cables going abroad, joined the strike, and the national grid operator warned of potential blackouts. (Reporting by Victoria Klesty; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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