Milan was among the major industrial cities in Italy, which were affected by a four-hour general strike on Thursday (17 October).
Milan was among the major industrial cities in Italy, which were affected by a four-hour general strike on Thursday (17 October). It is estimated that ten million workers took part in the national protest which was called by the trade unions in support of more money and more jobs.
It was the first time that the unions had staged a general strike at a time when the Italian Government was facing a serious political crisis. It took place just as the Prime Minister-designate, Signor Amintore Fanfani, had begun detailed bargaining with prospective allies on the possibility of forming a new government.
The strike hit offices, factories, public transport and airline flights, for only four hours -less in some cases - but it nevertheless showed that organised labour was in a tough mood, faced with deflation and austerity.
The unions called the strike following record rises in the cost of living and growing unemployment which had been highlighted by the move by the country's largest private industry, Fiat, to put 71,000 workers on a three day week because of falling sales.
Signor Fanafani's talks with Socialist leaders lasted an hour longer than planned, and no details were released afterwards.But the Socialists said that Signor Fanfani had spelled out his future plans, and they found them "positive" on a number of points.