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Umbrella Group Plans Mass Strike

By Moon Gap-sik (gsmoon@chosun.com), The Chosun Ilbo, 16 July 2003

The Korean Federation of Trade Unions will stage a general strike July 23-24 to try to block a bill to establish a five-day workweek that it says worsens working conditions.

Because the bill would be passed at the temporary session of the National Assembly this month, we will wage a hard-core strike and massive street demonstrations, a representative of the umbrella union said Wednesday. The bill does not reflect the demands of labor groups.

To discuss the strike plans, the confederation will hold emergency executive meetings in various regions on Friday and a national emergency representative meeting on Monday.

It also plans to publicize the core issues of its misgivings about the bill for the five-day workweek system and also begin a petition to pressure lawmakers in the National Assembly's environmental labor committee to oppose the legislation. The lawmakers that refuse will be targets of negative campaigns, the confederation said.

The confederation also decided to meet with the nation's other umbrella group, the Federation of Korean Trade Unions, and coordinate a single plan for labor.