Urgent Report

No : 8
Date : 2001-03-08 09:58:17
Name : PICIS Hit : 4084
Title: Bupyung in Korea (the Kim Dae-jung Government) is now under martial law.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We send  you this newsletter out  of a sense of urgency.  The workers at 
Daewoo Motors have  been on strike against the lay-offs of 1750 workers since
 the 16th of February.  
           The government has brutally  repressed the workers,  sending in   
        riot police  to break   up the strike   at the factory.    Workers,
students, and social movement activists have been engaged in an  all-out
battle against the government ever since, resulting  in the arrest of  dozens
and  the injury  of hundreds.   The people  of  Korea need   your solidarity 
to  overcome  this attack   by the government.  Send your messages of 
support to the workers at            Daewoo.   Send  your   messages of  
protest  to   the Korea  government and police.   Organize actions  at Korea 
Embassies.  An injury to one is an injury to all!  
 More     information      on     the      Daewoo     Struggle:              
           The Daewoo workers need you Support!!
           Solidarity to the Workers at Daewoo Motors!!
             The Daewoo workers have declared an all out struggle against    
       the largest  lay-offs ever   in Korea, amidst   brutal suppression
from the   government. The  workers  of  Daewoo  Motors had already been
several strikes on and off during the last 9 months,  but the struggle
reached its peak on the 16th of February as the  union   announced    an  
indefinite   general   strike    against  management's official announcement
that 1,750 workers would be  layed off.  The  management had  made  some
revisions   to its  demands, for  example, insisting  that 400  of the  1,780
will  be  given 2 year leave  without wages, but the  union did not  make 
any compromises.
             The management has shut down the Bu-pyung plant where all       
    of 1,750 to be laid off are  working, but the union has called  for  the
workers to  keep working,  organize education  sessions and struggles. The
police sent 2,000 riot police to the Bu-pyung plant and blocked   the gates 
to prevent   the workers  who,  having received their 'pink-slips' by post,
came to  the plant to join the            demonstrations. Family  members of 
the laid-off   workers have also come to the plant in anguish to join forces
with the striking workers. The management hired 300 'security' thugs to fight
the workers, and on 19th February,  the government took affirmative  action
and sent thousands of riot police to  the plant to bread up           the
strike.  The police   thoroughly ignored the  children  of the workers who
had come  hanging on their mothers'  backs, broke through the gates and 
forcefully dispersed the  workers, causing many injuries. 
             After the suppression of  the struggle at  the Bu-Pyung plant,  
         the workers  are now  out  on the  streets. On  the  20th, 2,000 
workers and students demonstrated at the Bupyeong  Station and fought
vigorously  with molotov  cocktails. They  continued onto  the next   day.
But  the  police   closed off   and blocked   the demonstrators   even  
before   they   had   commenced.   The     demonstrators  instead  ran   onto
the   highway  and  marched            approximately 2km towards Seoul. On
the 23rd,  one worker who could not   bear out  the  burden  of being  
laid-off committed suicide. On the  24th, the police  once again chased  the
workers  and students who were trying to come together at the Bu-pyung
Station. Some demonstrators were even driven onto the rails and       were
injured. The demonstrators then took over a road  but were chased again into
a  nearby university and  fought until dusk.  8  buses with supporting
workers  and family members  also joined the barricades.   More than   2,000
workers  fought  around  the  country the same day. 
             We are  witnessing once  again,  how the  economic crisis   is  
    brought on and used by the capitalist to throw workers onto  the streets,
weaken  workers' power  and bloat  the wealth  in their pockets. The
brutality of  the riot police brought  out once again the essence of the Kim 
government, who came into power  with sweet advertisements of democracy, as
he shattered all hopes and 
           immediately started his neo-liberal regime. Although it is evident
         whose side the government is on, the abrupt and pitiless violence
shown towards  the  Daewoo workers   came as a   shock. The workers, who have
nothing more to lose, are fighting back. 
             Along with   the struggles  at  the  plant,  KCTU and   other   
       progressive organizations   have formed   Daewoo Motors   Joint
Struggle Headquarters  to assist  the  workers struggles  at the same time
calling  for the arrest  of the Daewoo  chairman, Kim Woo-Chung.  Early
morning  on 9th  February, 50  members of  'Daewoo  Motors  Joint  Struggle 
Headquarters  Arrest  Squad' 
           occupied the   luxurious house  of the   Daewoo chairman,  Kim    
       Woo-Chung, calling   for the   his arrest,  on  multiple  charges 
against him  in connection  with  the dismantled  conglomerate's huge
financial scams. Although the allegations  have been proven to be true, the
Korean government is not making efforts to bring Kim home. About one month 
ago, the Korean news broadcasted     pictures of   Kim leisurely   playing
golf  somewhere  in  sunny  California, although  he  seems to   have moved 
now either   to Europe, Morocco or Sudan. The  Arrest Squad sent its  members
to Europe on the 23rd, in search for the 'fugitive' and  force him  to  come 
home  and  face  the   charges. The   Joint Struggle         Headquarters
have made  contact with  the International Metallic  Workers Federation for 
assistance, and  have sent  multi-lingual 'Wanted'  posters  to  foreign 
organizations  and  unions.  The  'Wanted' not only  aims at the  arrest of
Kim  but also for  the confiscation of the  wealth he  had illegally 
accumulated and  to      publicize the   collaboration of  the Kim   Dae-Jung
           Their objective of arresting Kim is really symbolic - they will be
          meeting with various anti neo-liberal groups and trade  unions to
call for international solidarity.
             The struggle continues as the Joint Struggle  Headquarters has  
     organized daily demonstrations.  The struggle is gaining strength  as
more and more workers, students, and activists are joining the
demonstrations.  The struggle  moved to Seoul  today, as  about 3000
participants gathered to denounce the  government's actions.  
           Protestors threw  rocks and  molotov  cocktails at  police, again 
        engaging in violent and  intense clashes with police,  which have 
become routine during the past week.   The oppression from the government  is
 also  becoming  more  severe,  as  police  have outlawed all demonstrations 
in the  Bu-pyung area  and dozens have been arrested during the
demonstrations.  We will keep you        updated on the results of the
           Your solidarity   and interest  would  be  a great   help to   the
       workers' struggle in Korea. Please send your words of solidarity to
the Daewoo Motors Joint Struggle Headquarters 


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