U.S. Markets open in 8 hrs

Bezeq Israel workers to strike over plan to sell company

The logo of Bezeq Israeli Telecommunication Corp Ltd, the country's largest telecom group, is seen outside their headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel June 21, 2017. REUTERS/Amir Cohen/File Photo

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Workers at Bezeq Israel Telecom have called a strike starting on Feb. 5 over plans by the parent company to divest its controlling stake, the country's largest telecoms company said on Wednesday.

Employees are demanding to be represented during talks to sell the company in order to be able to sign an agreement that protects workers' rights, Bezeq said in a regulatory filing in Tel Aviv.

Workers are also opposed to allowing contract employees to operate Bezeq's switching equipment and carry out activities that have until now been performed by staff.

Bezeq said it was unable to estimate the implications of the potential strike.

Internet Gold, which owns 64.78 percent of B Communications, has been searching for a buyer for its BCom stake since mid-2018 under heavy pressure from bondholders. BCom's single asset is a 26.34 percent controlling stake in Bezeq.

On Wednesday workers at Bezeq rival Cellcom, Israel's largest mobile phone operator, began labour sanctions in protest over plans to lay off 250 workers as part of cost-cutting measures, Cellcom's union said, calling on Cellcom to find a solution.

(Reporting by Steven Scheer; editing by Jason Neely)