Labor minister asks rail workers to call off general strike plan

Labor Minister Lee Jeong-sik on Wednesday urged unionized rail workers to cancel their plan to stage a general strike this week, citing its grave impact on the economy and the people's daily lives.

Lee made the remarks as the Korean Railway Workers' Union has threatened to carry out a general strike from Thursday to Monday to demand an expansion of KTX high-speed train services to include a lucrative station in southern Seoul.

The collective action is intended to pressure the transport ministry to come to the dialogue table on allowing KTX trains, run by Korea Railroad Corp., to access Suseo Station, the starting station of another high-speed train service called Super Rapid Train, or SRT.

The minister said the government will respond sternly to illegal labor activities according to the principle of no tolerance.

"At a critical time when everyone must join forces in the face of unfavorable economic conditions, the railway workers' union is raising public concern by sticking to its own demands alone," Lee said, stressing the strike that lacks legitimacy and justification must be called off.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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