Wednesday, January 26, 2011

3,000 Romanian auto workers protest fuel prices

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — About 3,000 auto workers at a French-Romanian carmaker Dacia Renault plant have protested budget cuts and fuel price hikes.

Workers opposed to President Traian Basescu shouted "Down with the government!" and "Down with Basescu!" Tuesday in the southern city of Mioveni, 120 kilometers (75 miles) northwest of Bucharest, footage on Realitatea TV showed.

Last year, the government cut public workers' salaries, increased the sales tax from 19 to 24 percent and cut child benefits to meet demands by the International Monetary Fund and gain a euro20 billion ($27.2 billion) loan for the country.

There has been widespread discontent with the budget cuts and fuel price increases in recent months.

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