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British miners' demand challenges government

Britain's miners challenged Margaret Thatcher's Conservative government Tuesday by demanding a 35 percent increase in their wages, and threatened industrial action if they did not get it. The National Union of Miners' annual conference voted unanimously in favor of the demand, but sources close to the state-owned industry said it would be unable to meet the claim, thus making a confrontation with the government appear inevitable.

A miners' strike over pay, which forced industry onto a three-day workweek, contributed to the downfall of Britain's last Conservative government in the 1974 elections.

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