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World in brief: January 19, 2023

ECUADOR: Workers at the Ecuador state-owned oil company Petroecuador began an indefinite strike in Quito on Wednesday, demanding fair wages and better working conditions.

The workers also demanded the dismissal of Petroecuador’s human resources deputy manager Julio Cesar Moscoso for not complying with wage equalisation.

According to the workers, Mr Moscoso has failed to meet the terms of a court ruling on January 15, which guarantees  equal pay for equal work.

CONGO: Police fired tear gas at demonstrators in eastern Congo on Wednesday after dozens of people took part in an unauthorised protest in Goma against the presence of foreign troops to help quell violence from armed groups.

Authorities later detained some participants, as well as some journalists covering the protest.

NEW ZEALAND: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, whose empathetic handling of the nation’s worst mass-shooting and health-driven response to the coronavirus pandemic gained her much praise, said today that she was leaving office.

Ms Ardern told reporters in Napier that February 7 would be her last day as prime minister.

She also announced that New Zealand’s 2023 general elections would be held on October 14, and that she would remain a lawmaker until then.

MICROSOFT: Tech giant Microsoft is cutting 10,000 workers, almost 5 per cent of its workforce, joining other tech companies that have scaled back their pandemic-era expansions.

The company said in a regulatory filing Wednesday that the layoffs were a response to “macroeconomic conditions and changing customer priorities.”

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