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Poland: Court to Rule Today on Troubled Gdansk Shipyards

  • Chris Klimiuk

Warsaw, August 5 (RFE/RL) -- The management of the Gdansk shipyard's motion that the debt-ridden yard be closed is scheduled to be considered today by a regional court in Gdansk, Poland.

The court last week opened hearings into the bankruptcy of the yard, where the Solidarity labor movement was born in 1980. The shipyard employs more than 6,600 people.

Shipyard president Ryszard Goluch says the closure will allow for contracts to be renegotiated and overdue wages to be paid to workers. The government, which is led by former communists, blames the yard's financial difficulties on unprofitable contracts, over-hiring and overly generous benefits.

Workers say the government is taking revenge on Solidarity, which helped bring down Poland's communist rulers in 1989. Workers are threatening to stage a protest action today unless back wages are paid by this morning.