Thousands of protesting workers block railroad lines to Cairo
ASSIUT, Egypt (AP) - Thousands of brick workers blocked railroad tracks from a southern city to Cairo for a second day on Sunday to protest rising industrial oil prices, causing the cancellation of some services.
The government lifted industrial fuel oil subsidies last week as part of a reform programme, prompting labour protests by quarry and brick factory workers.
Egypt has been gripped by unrest in recent days, partially because of public discontent with new government measures designed to deal with a crippling budget deficit. But the unrest has also been political, as criticism of President Mohammed Mursi's government is on the rise.
A security official said negotiations with the brick workers continued, allowing some trains coming from the capital to get through to the south, but causing a large backlog of trains in Cairo. Nearly 20 train trips to Cairo were cancelled. The official said the workers removed tracks for trains heading one direction near Beni Suef, south from Cairo, and put wood planks on the other.