Police storm car factory strikers

Police storm car factory strikers

Police commandos stormed the roof of a car factory paint shop in South Korea occupied by sacked workers protesting over axed jobs.

Television footage showed commandos swoop on Ssangyong's Pyeongtaek factory where workers wearing helmets and armed with sticks fought back.

Ssangyong has been in court-approved bankruptcy protection since February as falling sales plunged the company deeper into debt.

Up to 600 dismissed workers had packed themselves into the paint shop, which was thought to be full of flammable materials, sparking fears over the demonstrators' safety.

Workers have used slingshots and Molotov cocktails against approaching riot police, who have responded by firing water cannons and dropping tear gas from helicopters.

Ssangyong said between 500 and 540 people were still occupying the shop after about 100 gave up on Sunday.

Union spokesman Lee Chang-kun said that a police assault on the paint shop would be deadly.

"We will respond to it, bracing ourselves for death," he said.

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