Union longshoremen in israel defied a court order to end the strike that has totally crippled cargo handling at the country's main ports – haifa & ashdod.
Reports quote government officials as saying cargo handling at the ports is moving only at 25% of normal levels.since the strike’s beginning, some 120 ships refused entry and unloaded some 20,000 containers throughout middle-eastern ports. The cargo's value is estimated at $572 million.
The egyptians ports were the ones who reaped the profits of the longshoremen strike in israel’s ports: according to the israeli shipper's council, egyptian ports, which unloaded the ships’ containers, earned a profit of over $4.2 million. The israeli shippers council reported that more than 40 ships unloaded some 12,500 containers in the three main deep water ports throughout egypt : alexandria, daimetta, and port said.
At a recent press conference given by the leaders of the industrial as well as the commercial sectors it was stated that the aggregate damages to the economy were over 3.4 billion dollars.
Mr. Oded tira, chairman of the joint economic sectors organization called the strike "a total anarchy" and called upon the government to use its power to end the three weeks long strike.
The chairman of the israeli shippers council, eyal melamed, published a request for the longshoremen on strike to resume work unconditionally & immediately, “so that the workers don’t harm their own interests”.
Mr. Uriel lyn president of the federation of chambers of commerce called upon the government to declare a state of emergency and act immediately to stop longshoremen's court decision defiance.