3 Sep 2013

Paraguay: sacked drivers crucify themselves in protest

Eight Paraguayan bus drivers, who were reportedly fired from their jobs after demanding better pay and conditions, haved nail themselves to crosses in Luque, a town north of the capital, Asuncion.
The men have been lying nailed to crosses through their hands for 23 days, and have vowed to continue their protest until they are reinstated. Union leader Juan Villalba, one of the drivers crucified, said they would not give up their protest until all are reinstated. Mr Villalba claimed they had been sacked after asking for overtime pay, medical insurance and state pension contributions.
The drivers' wives are also taking turns to be nailed to crosses alongside their husbands. One appealed to the country's president to come witness their "inhuman situation". "I am joining in today. Tomorrow it will be another mum, and the following day it could be another, because we have to defend our rights," she said.
The manager of the Vanguardia bus company, Aufredi Paredes, said five of the drivers would be re-hired, but the group are refusing to return until all eight are reinstated.

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