Executives from the massive mining conglomerate Lonmin have decided not to fire 3,000 striking mine workers at their South African platinum mine, despite the strikers flouting today's deadline to return to work. This decision comes after last Thursday's bloody confrontation where police shot dead 34 miners, the most deadly labour conflict in South Africa since the fall of apartheid.
The strike began when thousands of workers left their posts, demanding an increase in their pay to 12,500 rand per month (roughly $1,500).
After a tense week of ultimatums and negotiations, Lonmin agreed to drop its threats for the moment, citing concerns that firing the mine workers could lead to more violence. The government has declared a national week of mourning, with the hope that both sides will remain pacified and resolve their issues.
Despite sustained pressure and violence against them, the striking miners insist they remain committed to the strike, saying they have sacrificed too much to return to work unless Lonmin agrees to their demands.
Learn more: Al Jazeera has an excellent overview of the current situation for those wondering why this particular strike has been so protracted and bloody.
Sources: BBC, CNN, Reuters, Al Jazeera