23 Sep 2004

Newspaper strike settled in New Caledonia

1:54 pm on 23 September 2004

Unionists in New Caledonia have agreed to end a blockade of the territory's only daily newspaper.

The management at the Nouvelles Caledoniennes newspaper says it's signed a deal with members of the USOENC union.

The strikers had said that today they would make good on their threat of calling a territory-wide general strike.

But a manager at the Nouvelles Caledoniennes newspaper, Roland Andrei, says there was a disagreement within the union leadership, and the strikers have ended up where they started.

"The strike is over. People are getting back to their work to making this paper for tomorrow, so we can have a newspaper for tomorrow. No striker is going to be paid, so there won't be any salaries for the strikers for this month; for 21 days."

Roland Andrei says the woman at the centre of an employment dispute which triggered the strike has been allowed to keep her job.

Mr Andrei says the deal reached today doesn't affect ongoing industrial action which has paralysed the broadcaster RFO.