Labor “Bad government violating fundamental right to assembly”…police “Prepare to be sprayed with capsaicin”
Ahead of a massive rally tomorrow afternoon 토토사이트(Jan. 31), the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions has criticized the government for violating fundamental rights by outlawing rallies it doesn’t like.
Police have emphasized that they will take a hard line against illegal rallies, even mentioning the possibility of spraying capsaicin, raising fears of a strong-arm confrontation and clashes between the two sides.
Reporter Woo Jong-hoon.
The Korean Confederation of Trade Unions is holding a ‘Warning Strike Resolution Convention’ on Sejong-daero in Seoul, where more than 20,000 union members are participating.
The rally, which will also be held in 13 regions across the country, will condemn the government’s response to the rally and call for a revision of the Labor Union Act.
Even a day ahead of the rally, the NCTU said the government is cracking down on labor and turning democracy into a thing of the past.
“The government is criminalizing peaceful assembly, which is guaranteed by international human rights law, to silence criticism.
[Yang Kyung-soo / Chairperson of the Democratic Trade Union Confederation: What on earth has the Yun Suk-yeol regime learned from its painful past, and if you don’t like it, please stop the archaic idea of shutting people up by beating them up].
The police, however, reiterated their hardline stance on the rally, saying that they would check the situation beforehand.
Police Chief Yoon Hee-geun ordered that “illegal rallies that cause inconvenience to citizens should be dispersed on site” and that “if necessary, we should prepare to use capsaicin sprayers.”
He deployed more than 120 police units to sites across the country and warned of on-the-spot arrests for disruptions.
In particular, Yoon pointed out that nightly cultural festivals and homeless vigils that take place beyond the declared hours constitute illegal gatherings.
This was a direct reference to a one-night rally in the city center two weeks ago where the leaders of the Democratic Trade Union Confederation and the construction union were arrested.
In the midst of this, the vice chairman of the NCTU claimed that the police had summoned him for violating the Gypsy Act when he was not even in front of the Employment and Labor Office during the rally on the 17th.
In response, the police said they issued the summons based on documentary evidence and said they would call the cadre to investigate whether they were really not there.
YTN’s Woo Jong-hoon.