On the same day Democrats and Republicans in Congress are pushing to pass a NAFTA-style trade pact with Peru - and citing Peru's supposed labor rights improvements as justification - we get this off the wires:
Peru Declares National Mining Strike Illegal
LIMA -(Dow Jones)- Peru's Labor Ministry on Wednesday declared a national mining-sector strike illegal.
Peru's National Federation of Mining, Metallurgy and Steel Workers on Monday started the nationwide strike, aiming to pressure the government to pass laws to give mining-sector workers more benefits.
Rep. Phil Hare (D-IL), who is leading the fight against the Peru Free Trade Agreement, notes that "The striking miners were fighting for, among other things, an eight hour work day." In addition, "we recently learned that there are 2 million children working in Peru, many in these very same mines."
So a country whose government is openly union busting and strike breaking in the name of preserving child labor and slave conditions is potentially going to get a free trade deal from Congress on the grounds that its labor policies are commendable. Unreal.
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