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Mexican auto workers halt work to protest austerity

The new government faced its first major walkout in its attempt to impose austerity measures on Mexico's troubled economy. About 8,000 striking auto workers, seeking a 60 percent wage increase, shut down production at the government-owned Diesel Nacional and Renault factories here. Meanwhile, two universities in Mexico City were closed by walkouts.

President Miguel de la Madrid has slashed the budget and increased taxes to help pull Mexico out of an $82 billion debt.

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