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NAPLES, Italy — Italian commissary workers at the U.S. Navy’s Gricignano support site base near Naples staged a daylong strike Friday, shutting down the store because of a lack of personnel, base and commissary officials said. The commissary is expected to reopen Saturday for regular business hours of 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Defense Commissary Agency called in American employees Friday to receive trucks and handle merchandise to be ready to reopen Saturday, said agency spokeswoman Gerri Young. On Friday, all but one cashier was Italian, so keeping the store open was impossible, she said.

The Italians staged the strike after a union meeting to inform them about changes in retirement conditions, said Young, though she had no details about the conditions.

The Italian government, headed by Prime Minister Romano Prodi, is considering several changes to the nation’s retirement, to include raising the retirement age and introducing an intermediary agency to dole out pensions.

Strikes are a common method for Italians to protest and draw public attention to labor complaints.

Base officials are not expecting demonstrations over the weekend, said Chief Petty Officer Dawn Scott, base spokeswoman.


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