ROME (Reuters) – Hundreds of workers from aluminum-maker Alcoa’s Sardinian smelter clashed with police on Monday to protest against the factory’s closure as the Italian government sought to avert the loss of more jobs.
Swiss industrial group Klesch offered a possible lifeline by expressing interest in the plant, but Alcoa in an email later said it had “not received any expressions of interest that are viable or different to those previously considered”.
Baton-wielding police beat back workers trying to break through their lines outside the industry ministry in Rome, where government officials, labor unions and Alcoa executives met in a last-ditch effort to head off the shuttering of the unprofitable factory.
About 600 workers whose jobs are threatened beat their hard hats on the gates, set off large firecrackers, and threw missiles at police. Riot police pushed them back when they tried to storm the ministry’s main gate, causing some minor injuries.