Dockworkers at Piraeus, Greece's largest port, suspended a six-week-old strike campaign Nov. 11 after a local court ruled illegal the action to protest the concession of container facilities to China's Cosco Pacific.
A judge in Piraeus said Tuesday the rolling strikes that 1,500 dockworkers began in early October were "illegal and excessive" as jobs are not at risk.
The court has banned further strikes over the Cosco deal and threatened daily fines of $6,000 if dockworkers walk out again.
The latest strike started on Nov. 3 and was due to end on Sunday but was extended by a further 48 hours as the dockworkers union stepped up pressure on the government to reopen negotiations with Cosco Pacific.
Dockworkers shut down the port for 16 days in October to coincide with the start of Hong Kong-based Cosco's concession.
The union claims the socialist government that was elected in early October has reneged on its campaign pledge to revisit the Cosco contract to obtain job guarantees for its members.
The union's decision to end the stoppage, which has stranded thousands of containers, was also said to have been prompted by a pledge by the newly appointed chief executive of the Piraeus port authority to start negotiations with Cosco to safeguard jobs.
The government said it can't scrap a legal contract between the previous conservative administration and Cosco, which paid around $5 billion for the 35-year concession to operate two of the three container quays at Greece's biggest port.
Contact Bruce Barnard at firstname.lastname@example.org.