FIJI SUGAR STRIKE ENTERS THIRD WEEK

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SUVA, Fiji (August 4, 1997 - PACNEWS)---The strike by 2,5000 members of the Fiji Sugar and General Workers Union has entered its third week, with no sign of settlement.

The striking workers are demanding resolution of health and safety issues in the mills before they will return to work.

Meantime, about 25,000 tons of harvested sugar cane, including 5,000 tons of burned cane lying on railroad tracks for the past two weeks, is expected to be rejected by the Fiji Sugar Corporation when the mills resume crushing.

Corporation regulations stipulate that, after seven days, burned cane will not be accepted for crushing at the mills.

Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has instructed the Minister of Agriculture, Militoni Leweniqila, to look for surplus sugar in other countries, so Fiji can meet its commitment to regular customers.

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