President Juan Maria Bordaberry's military-backed government continued to face serious difficulties on Monday (2 June) as many of Uruguay's workers refused to end a five-day-old general strike.
President Juan Maria Bordaberry's military-backed government continued to face serious difficulties on Monday (2 June) as many of Uruguay's workers refused to end a five-day-old general strike. On Saturday (30 June) night, President Bordaberry met with military leaders and the following day troops forced the reopening of Uruguay's only oil refinery.
All day on Sunday (1 July) armed troops cleared workers out of the factories and offices they had occupied. However, much of the country remained immobile as workers continued passive resistance to the government.
The workers called the strike last week on protest against Presidential decrees dissolving Parliament and local government councils. Resistance to President Bordaberry's rule continued to amalgamate with more opposition groups joining the union calls for the leader's resignation and an immediate restoration of constitutional freedoms.
SYNOPSIS: Military leaders met with Uruguay's President Bordaberry on Saturday night....the day before troops were ordered to clear strikers out of factories and offices they had occupied days earlier.
President Bordaberry has ruled by decree since he dissolved congress and local government councils early last week. Uruguay's only oil refinery was one of the major sites the military backed government wanted reopened as soon as possible.
All day Sunday, armed troops cleared workers out of occupied sites. However, this move had only limited effect. In many cases, the workers continued their campaign with passive resistance. Meanwhile, opposition to President Bordaberry's rule had stiffened with more groups joining those demanding his resignation.
The military action at the oil refinery did, however, result in some petrol being delivered to normal outlets.
The closure of the oil refinery was one of the most serious results of the industrial action. However, after Sunday's reopening, officials said the fuel situation was starting to improve. The refinery was operating with half its normal manpower and petrol stations reopened for sales to the public.
Although private road traffic was still badly disrupted after the partial resumption of petrol supplies, public transport was beginning to return to normal.