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Los Angeles/Long Beach ports reopening after crippling strike

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Work is resuming at the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors after settlement of a strike that crippled the nation's busiest container port complex for more than a week.

Los Angeles port spokesman Phillip Sanfield says gates at 10 closed terminals reopened Wednesday morning. Dockworkers will soon begin servicing at least 13 cargo ships that were stuck at the docks or at anchor.

Clerical workers who claimed shippers are outsourcing their jobs walked out last week and union dockworkers refused to cross their picket lines.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced Tuesday night that members of the ILWU bargaining team struck a deal to put an end to the week-old strike that had crippled the ports.

"We've got a deal and people are going back to work," the mayor said Tuesday night.

The agreement will now go to the rank and file for their approval. One ILWU representative told reporters he's confident it will be approved.

"This was a community effort that will benefit working families for many years to come," said ILWU Local 63-OCU president John Fageaux Jr. on Tuesday.

Federal moderators were brought in to attempt to negotiate a deal between ILWU clerical workers and their employers.

The 450 workers were on strike for eight days. They have been picketing in front of the entrances to several terminals, prompting closures because thousands of longshoremen refused to cross the picket lines.

The union says it won new protections against outsourcing, but details haven't been released.

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