The Egyptian army has intervened in an attempt to break the national strike by train drivers and guards, which has paralysed train services in much of the country for the last three days . Around 100 drivers have reportedly been transferred to the transport directorate in the Army in an attempt to crush the strike. Meanwhile, scab drivers are being offered bonuses of 300 Egyptian pounds and strikers have been threatened with arrest. On Tuesday train services were said to be resuming across the country, but the strikers’ main demands had not been met. These include a rise in the bonus per kilometre travelled from 11 qirsh to 25 qirsh (equivalent to a rise from 1p to 2.5p in UK prices), and an rise in the profit-sharing bonus comparable to the bonuses paid to the Cairo Metro workers.
The Muslim Brotherhood government has taken a hard line in opposing strikes in recent months – police harassment and prosecutions of strikers have increased dramatically. But workers are continuing to fight back, as spiralling prices and unemployment are hitting the poor hard.
What you can do:
- Rush messages of support for the Egyptian railway workers to us for forwarding to Egypt via firstname.lastname@example.org
- Send urgent protests to the Egyptian Embassy in your country (Email the Egyptian Embassy in the UK here: email@example.com )
- Take a picture of yourself and your colleagues with this sign and send to us via Twitter (@menasolidarity) or Facebook