South Korean anti worker police violence

This Euronews video from Seoul in South Korea says about itself:

South-Korea workers strike. Tens of thousands of South Korean workers organised an anti-government demonstration in Seoul to demand job security.

From British daily The Morning Star:

Police bully striking South Korean railway workers

Wednesday 02 December 2009

by Tom Mellen

South Korean police have stormed the offices of striking railway workers after the government refused to negotiate over what it calls an illegal walkout.

Managers at state rail monopoly Korail walked out of talks with union representatives last week, branding their opposition to a planned pay cut and demand for the reinstatement of fired members “unreasonable.”

As well as protecting their pay, the 16,000 striking workers are calling on Seoul to scrap reform plans for Korail and other state firms which would entail job cuts.

And they want President Lee Myung Bak’s pro-business administration to ditch proposed legislation that would hurt organising efforts. …

Korail management’s refusal to resume negotiations reflects conservative President Lee‘s hard-line anti-union stance.

Mr Lee has pledged to undermine the strength of South Korea’s unions, which he accuses of undermining the country’s economic competitiveness.

He is pushing legislation that would ban firms from paying wages to full-time trade union activists and restrict labour protests by members of the armed forces.

The country’s two umbrella union groups, the 500,000-strong Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) and the 700,000-strong Federation of Korean Trade Unions have vowed to kick off a joint strike next month unless the pro-US government government changes its “anti-labour” stance by the end of this month.

“We will make preparations for an all-out struggle against the government,” the militant KCTU said in a statement.

In August, riot police were used to crush a strike at embattled Ssangyong Motor Co over a massive layoff plan.

In the end, union leaders were forced to drop their key demands.

25 years ago: Dissident Kim Dae-jung roughed up on return to South Korea: here.

3 thoughts on “South Korean anti worker police violence

  1. Korail workers call off strike action

    South Korea: Embattled rail workers have called off strike action against wage and staff cuts that crippled South Korean rail services for eight days.

    Korail union officials announced that they were temporarily lifting the action to regroup in the wake of a police raid on their offices on Wednesday.

    “We are calling on comrade members to briefly return to the workplace so we can prepare for a new strike,” the officials said, urging management to resume dialogue in a “faithful and reasonable” manner.


  2. Pingback: South Korean birds threatened | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Australian solidarity with Korean workers | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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