Thousands of public-sector doctors and teachers in Honduras launched a nationwide strike Monday to pressure the government into paying overdue wages plus a promised salary increase.

The head of the emergency pediatric unit of the Tegucigalpa Teaching Hospital, Dario Zuniga, told Efe that the striking doctors are only seeing emergency and critical cases.

Zuniga said that a commission from the Honduras medical association will meet late Monday with health care officials to determine whether or not the strike will continue Tuesday in the country's 28 public hospitals and 256 clinics.

The doctors' strike that seeks payment of a wage adjustment for the first half of 2012 comes on top of a month-long walkout by 2,600 auxiliary nurses.

Meanwhile, thousands of teachers went on a 48-hour strike and in the streets of Tegucigalpa are demanding that the government "be punctual" in paying their salaries.

The government "has not paid the majority of teachers" the salary they are owed for the month of July, union official Orlando Mejia told reporters.

More than 2.5 million public school students are to receive no classes on Monday or Tuesday due to the strike of some 61,000 teachers, who are paid an average monthly wage of $350. 

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