South Africa Digging Out to Avoid a Cave-in

After thousands are fired, the miners accept a settlement

Both sides had predicted that a strike this summer against South Africa's most important industry would be a nasty affair filled with ultimatums and mass firings. That forecast came true last week as hundreds of thousands of the country's black mineworkers stayed off the job and the mining companies hit back with the start of mass firings. But after a four-hour negotiating session Sunday, the blows and counterblows came to a sudden end. "The strike is over," said Johan Liebenberg, chief negotiator for the Chamber of Mines, which represents the six largest mining companies. While the settlement appeared to be mostly...

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