Gold Fields fires 8,500 workers

■ South African miner Gold Fields yesterday fired 8,500 striking miners after they ignored an ultimatum to return to work. The dismissal came as the gold company warned last week it could fire up to 11,000 wildcat strikers at its KDC West operation. The workers have 24 hours to appeal the dismissal. The South African mining industry has been under continued pressure to end weeks of industrial action.