BBC workers call off strike

Walkouts scheduled for two dates in April

LONDON -- Friday's planned 24-hour walkout by BBC news journalists has been called off after BBC bosses agreed to negotiations over planned compulsory layoffs, it was announced Thursday. A second day of industrial action planned for April 9 also has been canceled.

The strikes, which had threatened to disrupt TV and radio news bulletins, was called off after National Union of Journalists officials met with BBC execs Thursday and agreed to a deal that will avoid compulsory job cuts in the BBC's South Asian news bureau. Those cuts will be replaced by some voluntary redundancies and job re-deployments.