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Portugal mail workers launch strike

Portuguese postal workers opposed to the national mail service's planned privatisation are walking off the job for 24 hours, marking the start of a series of strikes by labour groups angry about reforms and austerity measures.

The government has announced plans to sell up to 70% of the state-owned mail company CTT-Correios de Portugal.

Trade unions fear layoffs and a loss of entitlements.

The privatisation is part of a lengthy list of measures Portugal agreed to enact in return for its 78 billion euro (£66 billion) financial rescue in 2011. Tax hikes and pay and pension cuts are to continue next year.

Transport workers have called walkouts between October 31 and November 9.

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