Continued from page 1

SANTIAGO — Chile is bracing for a nationwide, two-day shutdown as unions, students and a center-left coalition of political parties demand fundamental changes in society.

They want to replace Chile’s dictatorship-era constitution, which concentrates vast power in the presidency, with a new charter that enables popular referendums and makes free education a right for all citizens.

They also want pension reforms, a new labor code and more investments in health care.

Chile’s largest union coalition, representing about 13 percent of the workforce and many government employees, called the strike for Wednesday and Thursday to join forces with high school and university students who have boycotted classes for three months now.

The strike also is supported by the center-left coalition that governed Chile for 20 years before President Sebastian Pinera brought the right wing back into the presidential palace last year.

Public transportation workers and providers of state-run day care also said they would strike, stranding millions of other Chileans.


BBC: Cameron aide took tabloid cash

LONDON — A former editor of the News of the World received payments and benefits from the newspaper while working as an aide to Conservative leader David Cameron, the BBC reported Tuesday.

Andy Coulson resigned from the now-defunct tabloid early in 2007 after a reporter and a private investigator were jailed for hacking into the voice mails of royal staff.

Six months later, he was hired as communications chief to Mr. Cameron, then Britain’s opposition leader. Mr. Cameron became prime minister in May 2010.

The BBC, without identifying its source, reported that Mr. Coulson continued to receive severance pay amounting to several hundred thousand dollars from the paper until the end of 2007, and also kept his health care plan and company car.

Mr. Coulson denied knowing about phone hacking, but resigned from Downing Street in January after police reopened their inquiry into wrongdoing at the paper.

Last month, he was arrested and questioned by detectives investigating allegations that the Rupert Murdoch-owned newspaper illegally eavesdropped on the voice-mail messages of celebrities, politicians and even murder victims.

From wire dispatches and staff reports