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Strike idles most of LA-Long Beach port complex

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Most of the nation's largest port complex is shut down as clerical workers strike the Los Angeles and Long Beach terminals.

Union spokesman Craig Merrilees says members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union are picketing Thursday.

Port spokesmen say seven of eight Los Angeles terminals and three of six in Long Beach are closed. In LA, 14 ships in dock and in the harbor aren't being serviced.

On Wednesday, dockworkers refused to cross clerical worker picket lines even though an arbitrator ruled the strike invalid.

The clerical workers have been locked in a contract dispute with more than a dozen shippers for 2 { years. They claim terminal operators have been outsourcing their jobs overseas. Shippers deny that and say they've even offered to guarantee local jobs.

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