/** labr.global: 301.0 **/
** Topic: Cambodian Garment Workers Strike/Mar **
** Written 7:42 PM Dec 23, 1996 by labornews in cdp:labr.global **
Cambodian Garment Workers March
Phnom Penh, Cambodia - Armed police officers were deployed on the streets of the capital today as 3,000 striking garment workers held Cambodia's biggest protest after being locked out of their factory. The lockout came after the workers, mostly women, began the first labor st rike in Cambodia's modern history on Tuesday to protest poor pay and bad working conditions at Cambodia Garments Ltd.
The workers marched six miles in the pouring rain today from the Malaysian-owned garment factory to the National Assembly and Council of Ministers buildings in downtown Phnom Penh.
They were demanding the factory reopen and that their other demands be met. No violence was reported. The march was headed by Sam Rainsy, leader of the opposition Khmer Nation Party.
Cambodia's labor laws, passed during the Communist rule, have been criticized by human-rights activists for failing to protect workers' right to organize.