Three-month strike ends

July 24, 1998

A strike by professors at more than 30 federal universities in Brazil has been called off after 104 days with a compromise regarded by union leaders as a turning point in the struggle for more resources for the state system.

President Fernando Henrique Cardoso has approved a law raising salaries for 69,000 lecturers at federal universities by about 15 per cent, which is 60 per cent of the original demand.

Union leader Luiz Carlos Lucas said the strike would be a turning point in "academic history" and would have "immense repercussions".

Fernando Celso Garcia de Freitas, who lectures at the Fundacio Getulio Vargas and two other universities, said: "There is a major conflict between academia and the government, which wants to privatise everything and make cut-backs in the public sector."

Jose Invonildo do Rego, rector of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, said that students at the university would catch up on the lectures lost during the strike over the next two semesters.

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