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  • People stand in front of Renault car plant in Bursa, Turkey, May 21, 2015.

    People stand in front of Renault car plant in Bursa, Turkey, May 21, 2015. | Photo: Reuters

Published 26 May 2015

The striking Renault workers prompted workers at other factories in the city to walk out from their jobs and demand a pay increase.

Turkish workers and the Turkish arm of French car-maker Renault were engaged in negotiations on Tuesday over wages, after factory workers have been on strike for over 13 days.

On Sunday the factory's administration offered concessions to the striking workers as the factory's operation came to halt due to the strike.

In the first round of negations on Tuesday night, the company proposed a $370 advance and other incentives, plus an additional $220 bonus at the end of the year, with a promise to increase hourly wages within the next month.

However, the workers rejected the offer arguing that the company did not specify the amount of the hourly wage increase. The workers then resumed their protest and were seen with sleeping bags in front of in the gardens of the factory located in the city of Bursa in west of Turkey.

 

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The negations then resumed on Tuesday evening. But local media said that a deal had not been reached yet. The striking Renault workers prompted workers at other factories in the city, namely Tofas factory, owned by Italy's Fiat and Ford Otosan factory, the Turkish unit of the United States giant car manufacturer Ford, to walk out from their jobs and demand a pay increase.

The strike comes as Turkey is set for its general election on June 7, at a time when the Turkish economy is showing signs of weakness after a decade of economic growth under the rule of President Tayyip Recep Erdogan's party the Justice and Development party, known as AK party.

In previous elections, the ruling AK party claimed that it was the force behind the economic growth. However, this time around, the opposition seems to be using those strikes and the slow growth to hit hard at the AK party.

Speaking at an electoral rally on Saturday in the coastal city of Izmir, the co-chair of the opposition Kurdish party in Turkey, Selahattin Demirtas, called for solidarity with the strikers.

RELATED: Worker Rights in Turkey
 

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