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Half Paralyzed Railroad..

Posted February. 26, 2002 10:14,   


The Korea Railway Union (KRU), the Korea Electric Power Industry Union (KEPIU), and the Korean Gas Corporation Union (KGCU), pushed ahead with general strike from 4:00 AM on 25th.

The government declared a strict judiciary response to the strikes of the core public industry unions that violate the law obligating the coordination and the mediation of the National Labor Relations Commission before beginning strikes.

By the strike of KRU, the operation of the subway in the Capital city area remained under 67 percent and more than half of the railways were paralyzed yesterday morning, causing a serious turmoil in commutation.

The government set for the emergency operation system by deploying substitute personnel, including the experienced people, military persons, and non-unionists.

4000 unionists of KRU and KEPIU gathered in the campus of Konkuk University and Seoul University from the night of 24th and have been continuing overnight sittings and strikes. However, KGCU returned to their working place after Park Sang-Wuk, chairperson of KGCU agreed with Lim Nae-Kyu, vice Minister of Energy, Commerce, and Industry, on an `agreement for the gas industry restructuring` yesterday morning.

The union leaders of KRU and KEPIU, gathered in the Myungdong Catholic Cathedral, asserted that ¡°this strike was caused by the government`s wrong restructuring policy to enforce the privatization of the public business sectors. The government must step forward to solve the current issues of each business site.¡°

Korean Confederation of Trade Union (KCTU) held a press conference independently and announced that ¡°if the government fails to conclude the negotiation with KRU and KEPIU by noon, Feb. 26th, 100,000 unionists from 140 member unions including Hyundai Motors and Kia Motors will go on strike from 1:00 PM.¡°

Federation of Korean Trade Union (FKTU) also declared that ¡°if the just request of workers were rejected, we will respond with a strong fight in the labor spots.¡°

However, labor experts anticipated that the strike would be getting weak as the time goes on since the government keeps a firm stance against the strikes of KRU and KEPIU and by the secession of KGCU from the general strike.