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Metro services return to normal, strikers take legal action

Trains gradually started resuming service on the Athens metro on Friday after nine days in a row of strike action by workers were cut short by a pre-dawn police raid on the capital's main train depot where dozens of unionists had staged a sitin.

Metro services resumed shortly before 3 p.m. on Friday after hundreds of striking workers were served with papers ordering them to return to work or face arrest and trial. Hundreds more workers were expected to be served with papers until late Friday night following the government's decision on Thursday to issue a civil mobilization order.

It remained unclear what would happen with services on city buses, trolley buses, the Athens electric railway and the tram after workers on those modes of transport called rolling 24-hour strikes to express solidarity with their metro colleagues. According to transport managers, an adequate number of employees had turned up to work and services were expected to operate as normal.

Protesting metro workers staged a symbolic sitin at Aghios Antonios metro station on Friday afternoon while unionists representing them lodged an appeal with the Council of State, the country's administrative court, against the government's decision to issue a civil mobilization order to force them back to work.

The decision by the conservative-led government to issue a mobilization order was opposed by junior partner Democratic Left and drew harsh criticism from virtually all opposition parties.

ekathimerini.com , Friday Jan 25, 2013 (16:44)  
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