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Union claims strikers were intimidated by employers and police

The KOVO trade union is ready to continue its protests against proposed changes to the Labour Code, with a general strike among its options, KOVO board member Milan Balica said on Tuesday, February 22. Balica complained about what he called intimidation used against those taking part in union-organised rallies.

The KOVO trade union is ready to continue its protests against proposed changes to the Labour Code, with a general strike among its options, KOVO board member Milan Balica said on Tuesday, February 22. Balica complained about what he called intimidation used against those taking part in union-organised rallies.

“Before and during a protest outside the headquarters of the YAZAKI company in Michalovce [Košice Region] on February 1, the people who staged the gathering were browbeaten by employers. They faced threats that, should layoffs occur, they would be the first to be sacked,” Balica said, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

Moves aimed at thwarting further strikes were also recorded at a strike affecting local bus services in Košice on February 3, Balica claimed. According to him, drivers employed by Eurobus faced pressure and threats from the head of the firm. “KOVO has launched a series of steps; we’ve also filed a complaint against police action during the strike in Košice. Via the Smer party, we’ve urged the interior minister [Daniel Lipšic] to make a statement regarding the activities of the police,” added Balica.

Košice regional police spokesperson Jana Demjanovičová responded that police officers did not intervene against protesting drivers in any way. They were simply on duty at the site of the protest in case public order was disrupted, she said.

No more strikes are planned for the moment as the trade unions are awaiting the conclusions of a working group on the Labour Code amendments, Balica said.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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