News In Brief

British transport union agrees to talks on ending dock strike

The transport union agreed Monday to talks with the government's mediation service on ending the dockworkers' strike that has shut most of Britain's largest ports, which has sharply affected trade and caused shortages. The strike began July 10.

The Transport and General Workers Union expanded the strike to include freight traffic through Dover, the busiest English Channel port. More than 90 ports have been idled by the strike. But the dockworkers said they would continue to handle passenger ferries to the Continent from Dover.

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, confronted by nationwide coal mine and dock strikes, convened members of her Cabinet Monday to discuss options. She hinted over the weekend that Army troops might be called in to do the work of 35,000 longshoremen at the ports.

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