Olympic workers strike in Rio

GMT 01:13 2015 Wednesday ,20 May

Arab Today, arab today Olympic workers strike in Rio

Olympic Park for the Rio 2016
Rio de Janeiro - AFP

Olympic construction work for next year's Games in Rio came to a partial halt on Tuesday after thousands of workers demanding a pay rise put down their tools.

Around 70 percent of some 12,000 workers preparing South America's first ever Olympiad was on hold as the dispute hit several sites.

A judge ruled Monday that at least 30 percent of workers should maintain basic construction services pending a solution to the dispute.

"The Engenhao stadium site and Deodoro complex, plus Galeao international airport, those of the southern metro line and the subway system are 70 percent paralyzed," Rio's heavy construction workers' union chairman Nilson Duarte Costa told AFP.

Bosses and workers are due to meet Friday before a regional tribunal in an attempt to find an agreement.

The Municipal Olympic Committee overseeing construction preparations indicated for its part that only the northern section of the Deodoro district -- one of four areas hosting the Games and that will host 11 disciplines -- had been hit by the stoppage.

The body said the dispute would not severely impact preparations for next year's August 5-21 event.

The strike is due to last all week, just as members of the International Olympic Committee visit to check on proceedings.

On its most recent visit to the host city in February, the IOC drew attention to concerns over the state of preparations for golf, cycling and equestrian sports.

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