Singapore's first strike in nearly 3 decades highlights strains from foreign worker influx

Singapore responded to its first strike in nearly three decades with riot police and strident official criticism of the disgruntled Chinese immigrant workers, highlighting strains from an influx of foreign labor.

Many of the 171 striking bus drivers had returned to work Wednesday after a government minister warned them they had "crossed the line" and riot police were stationed near their dormitory.

They went on strike Monday in protest at being paid nearly a quarter less than Malaysian bus drivers who work for the same Singapore transport company.

An influx of foreign workers has strained public services and sparked a backlash, particularly among low-income Singaporeans, by keeping wages down. Growing numbers of expatriate professionals working for global companies in the city have pushed up housing and other costs.