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Why Strike?

Posted June. 30, 2007 04:14,   


Former Seoul Mayor Lee Myung-bak, who is currently competing for the GNP presidential candidacy, held a press conference on June 29 in Seoul and called for an immediate end to Hyundai Motor union’s strike against the Korea-U.S. FTA.

Former Mayor Lee said, “Unlawful union activities and its militant strike are causing a Korean economic crisis. With the conclusion of the Korea-U.S. FTA, the domestic auto industry stands to gain the most; however, the union of arguably the nation’s most famous automaker, Hyundai Motor, is waging a strike in protest of the FTA. I want to ask the union why it is striking. For what and for whom?”

Prior to the press conference, Lee visited the War Memorial in Yongsan, Seoul, commemorating the fifth anniversary of the battle against the North in the Yellow Sea. After offering flowers to the souls of the deceased, Lee had a 20-minute conversation with writer Choi Soon-jo, who wrote the novel, “Battle in the Yellow Sea.”

During the conversation, Lee said, “It is important to prepare for any possible war in the future, but the priority should be on war deterrence since a sense of security is essential. The reason behind the presence of U.S. soldiers on Korean soil is their great contribution to war deterrence.”

He also added, “Security and the economy are the two things we cannot afford to fail on, so security must be maintained with our willpower while the economy underpins it. With a new naval vessel named after Lieutenant Commander Yoon Yeong-ha, who died in the Yellow Sea battle, we can get receive some condolences, but so far, we have not paid much attention to those who fought for the country in the Yellow Sea five years ago. Therefore, I will take a close look at how they are doing these days.”

Lee will climb a mountain with journalists on July 1 for the first time since his retirement as Seoul mayor.

Support from other prominent political figures of former President Kim Young-sam’s Democratic Party have also continued. On June 21, 32 former lawmakers including former Chairman of the National Assembly Kim Soo-han expressed their support for Lee. On June 29, as many as 217 individuals have pledged to support Lee. Among them are former Democratic Party lawmakers Lee Shin-beom and Heo Jae-hong.