Business Secretary Lord Mandelson has responded to the industrial action at the Lindsey Refinery, Sellafield power station and other sites across the country.

He explained that the strikes are related to a contract which was given to an Italian contractor, IREM.

Those involved in the strike action are claiming that British workers have been discriminated against because only Italian and Portuguese workers from IREM were taken on for the job.

Lord Mandelson has said that it called on ACAS, the independent arbitration service to report on whether "laws have been broken".

He went on to explain "if they have we will take action" and that the government is "determined to see robust enforcement of the employment rights legislated for by this Parliament".

Mr Mandelson also suggested Total had said it did "not operate any policy of discrimination".

Unions have now been offered a deal which would give 50 per cent of new contract jobs to British workers and they are expected to vote on the matter tomorrow (February 5th).