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Cambodian police fire on strikers, killing four

Publication Date : 04-01-2014

 

At least four striking garment workers were killed and 22 injured as military police opened fire in Phnom Penh, in the third and worst day so far of clashes, which followed weeks of protests against the government.

Violence and arson were being reported from the capital's Veng Sreng industrial district until yesterday evening, with one police station reportedly on fire. Security forces blocked roads into the capital to prevent more workers and opposition supporters from joining the protests.

The garment industry employs up to 500,000 people and is an engine of the Cambodian economy, earning around US$5 billion a year in exports. Unions are striking to demand a higher minimum wage.

Last week, the Ministry of Labour set the minimum monthly wage for the sector this year at $95 - far less than the unions' demand of $160. The previous wage was $80. The unions called a strike.

 

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