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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

No Gas as Strike Stalls South Africa

APCustomers lining up Friday at a gas station in Johannesburg, South Africa.
CAPE TOWN, South Africa -- Gasoline stations ran dry and long lines were forming at the few that still had supplies as a week-old strike gripped many parts of South Africa.

The city of Johannesburg was hardest hit; panic buying by motorists before the weekend, worsened the situation.

"It feels like Zimbabwe," said motorcyclist David Marsh in an oft-repeated reference to the daily shortages afflicting South Africa's neighbor.

Members of the Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood, and Allied Workers' Union went on strike Monday to press their claims for a 9.5 percent wage increase. Employers are offering from 6.5 percent to 8 percent.

Union leaders and employers in the pharmaceutical sector on Thursday settled on an 8.5 percent wage increase, averting feared shortages in the production and distribution of key drugs including anti-AIDS medication.