Labor dispute locks tourists out of Pompeii

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Labor dispute locks tourists out of Pompeii
An Italian carabinieri police officer stands guard during the re-opening of a recently renovated 'Great Theater' inside the archaeological ruins of Pompeii, in Italy, on June 23, 2014. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
An Italian carabinieri police officer stands guard during the re-opening of a recently renovated 'Great Theater' inside the archaeological ruins of Pompeii, in Italy, on June 23, 2014. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
Tourists visit the 'Great Theater' which was recently restored and re-opened to the public inside the archaeological ruins of Pompeii, in Italy, on June 23, 2014. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
Tourists visit the 'Great Theater' which was recently restored and re-opened to the public inside the archaeological ruins of Pompeii, in Italy, on June 23, 2014. AFP PHOTO / MARIO LAPORTA (Photo credit should read MARIO LAPORTA/AFP/Getty Images)
POMPEI, ITALY - APRIL 12: Tourists visit the ruins of the Foro (Forum) at the archeological site on April 12, 2014 in Pompei, Italy. The Italian government has enacted a series of provisions for the strengthening of the private security inside the archaeological site, following the recent theft of part of the fresco of Artemis. In 2013 Pompeii was visited by almost 2.5 million tourists. (Photo by Giorgio Cosulich/Getty Images)
POMPEI, ITALY - APRIL 12: Tourists pass by an area under restoration as they visit the 'Casa del Poeta Tragico' (House of the Tragic Poet) at the archaeological site on April 12, 2014 in Pompei, Italy. The Italian government has enacted a series of provisions for the strengthening of the private security inside the archaeological site, following the recent theft of part of the fresco of Artemis. In 2013 Pompeii was visited by almost 2.5 million tourists. (Photo by Giorgio Cosulich/Getty Images)
POMPEI, ITALY - APRIL 12: Tourists visit the ruins at the archaeological site on April 12, 2014 in Pompei, Italy. The Italian government has enacted a series of provisions for the strengthening of the private security inside the archaeological site, following the recent theft of part of the fresco of Artemis. In 2013 Pompeii was visited by almost 2.5 million tourists. (Photo by Giorgio Cosulich/Getty Images)
POMPEI, ITALY - APRIL 12: Casts of bodies found in the excavations are exhibited inside the 'Terme Stabiane' (Stabiane Bath) at the archeological site on April 12, 2014 in Pompei, Italy. The Italian government has enacted a series of provisions for the strengthening of the private security inside the archaeological site, following the recent theft of part of the fresco of Artemis. In 2013 Pompeii was visited by almost 2.5 million tourists. (Photo by Giorgio Cosulich/Getty Images)
POMPEI, ITALY - APRIL 12: Tourists visit the ruins of the Foro (Forum) at the archeological site on April 12, 2014 in Pompei, Italy. The Italian government has enacted a series of provisions for the strengthening of the private security inside the archaeological site, following the recent theft of part of the fresco of Artemis. In 2013 Pompeii was visited by almost 2.5 million tourists. (Photo by Giorgio Cosulich/Getty Images)
A view taken on March 18, 2014 shows the House of Neptune in the Modesto way, where a custodian doing rounds last week discovered that 'a part of a fresco in the House of Neptune had been removed'. 'The goddess Artemis has been 'chiseled off with a metallic object', the Pompeii archaeological superintendent department said in a statement on March 18. AFP PHOTO / CARLO HERMANN (Photo credit should read CARLO HERMANN/AFP/Getty Images)
A photo taken on March 18, 2014 shows the Modesto way, where a custodian doing rounds last week discovered that 'a part of a fresco in the House of Neptune had been removed'. 'The goddess Artemis has been 'chiseled off with a metallic object', the Pompeii archaeological superintendent department said in a statement on March 18. AFP PHOTO / CARLO HERMANN (Photo credit should read CARLO HERMANN/AFP/Getty Images)
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ROME (AP) - A labor dispute kept tourists locked out of Pompeii on Monday, the latest in a spate of hours-long closures at the ancient Roman ruins.

The gates were unlocked a couple of hours, frustrating tourists wanting to enter the sprawling ruins in early morning.

The dispute over work schedules and back pay began last week, keeping thousands of visitors shut out for hours at a time during union meetings. The government office that runs Pompeii said that three assemblies planned later this week were cancelled, meaning visitors could expect regular opening hours.

With funding chronically short for maintenance, some of Pompeii's ruins have suffered partial collapses in recent years. Bureaucracy has slowed the spending of special funds for repairs.

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