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Workers In Russian Far East Ask Putin For Help

SVETLOGORYE, Russia -- Trade unions at the Russky Volfram plant in the Far East are officially calling on Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to help them get their back wages, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Workers at the plant in the town of Svetlogorye in the Primorsky region say they have not been paid in seven months and told RFE/RL that the factory is planning mass layoffs on June 12.

The resolution adopted by the trade unions urges Putin to put the facility under state control.

Nearly half of Svetlogorye's some 700 citizens are employees at the plant, which produces wolfram, a metallic element used in electrical products.

Putin visited the region in April and met with Primorsky Governor Sergei Darkin, who promised to find a buyer for the plant.