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Release Choi Sang-Je, president of Korean media workers’ union

28/07/2009 Republic of Korea

Join our campaign for the release of Choi Sang-Je, who was arrested yesterday in what his union believes is an attempt to silence criticism of a law lifting media ownership restrictions.

UNI Global Union today called on its members to join in a campaign for the release of Choi Sang-Je, president of Korea’s National Union of Media Workers (NUMW).
Choi was arrested yesterday in what his union believes is an attempt to silence criticism of a controversial law lifting media ownership restrictions. The new law allows a small group of owners to control print and broadcast media in Korea and will stifle editorial independence and the diversity of voices and views that are necessary for a free press and true democracy.

UNI believes his arrest is an attempt to intimidate him and stifle the response of the union and other media and civic organisations who are protesting the new law relaxing media ownership requirements.

UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings has sent a letter to the judge in Choi’s case urging that the union president be release immediately.

UNI is asking its members and the general public to also send messages to the judge urging Choi’s release and an end to the intimidation campaign against the media and to set a clear legal precedent to ensure that this does not happen again and that the NUMW and other organisations are allowed to exercise their right to freedom of speech and oppose the new media law.

As president of the NUMW, Mr. Choi, has led protests opposing the media law and what the NUMW believes were illegal voting procedures to pass it. This has led to what UNI believes are politically motivated and unfounded accusations of obstruction of business.

On July 27 he was arrested and taken into police custody. He was arrested despite the fact that he had already told police he would respond to their summons. UNI believes that this was a calculated move to intimidate him and his colleagues and to squash the protest movement.

Click
here to send a message calling for his release.


Rachel Cohen
Head of UNI Communications
Mobile: +41 79 888 07 53

U
NI global union
8-10 Av. Reverdil
1260 NYON
Switzerland
Tel:  +41 22 365 21 29
Fax: +41 22 365 21 21

rachel.cohen@uniglobalunion.org
www.uniglobalunion.org
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