The government will deal sternly with a militant umbrella union's general strike planned for next week, the labor minister said Wednesday, labeling it "illegal."
The Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) has said all of its members will go on strike Tuesday, timed with the first anniversary of the incumbent government, demanding it stop oppressing workers and attempting to privatize public companies.
"The government will sternly deal with the illegal strike with no justifiable purpose," Phang Ha-nam said during a press conference at the government complex in this central administrative city of Sejong.
"The principle of no-work-no-pay will be applied to individual unions and unionists taking part in the strike and they will be held responsible for their participation, including receiving disciplinary actions," the minister said.
The government, once again, calls on the union to cancel its planned strike and try to resolve problems through dialogue, he said, adding he is willing to meet with KCTU leaders to help resolve pending issues.
The government appeal comes amid concern that the upcoming strike may hurt the atmosphere of dialogue that has recently begun to germinate between labor and management under government mediation.
On Friday, the parliamentary committee on environment and labor agreed to organize a subcommittee with representatives from labor, management, government and the political circle to discuss pending labor issues such as the scope of ordinary wage and reduction of working hours.
Phang met with the head of another umbrella labor union, the Federation of Korean Trade Unions (FKTU), on Monday and is scheduled to attend a meeting of FKTU representatives next Wednesday. (Yonhap)