The Korean Confederation of Trade Unions(KCTU) and the Korean Public Service and Transport Workers' Union have urged the International Labour Organization(ILO) to further intervene in their dispute with the government over its return-to-work order.
According to the labor community on Wednesday, the heads of the two unions sent a letter the previous day making such a request to ILO Director-General Gilbert Houngbo and Clément Voule, the UN special rapporteur on the right to peaceful assembly and association.
The unions have accused the South Korean government of violating ILO conventions and attempting to criminalize their labor activities.
Tuesday’s letter is the second appeal to the ILO by the unions after their initial request for intervention resulted in the organization’s secretariat asking Seoul to explain its position behind issuing the order requiring cement truck drivers to return to work.
The labor ministry reportedly downplayed the ILO's move as an opinion inquiry, not an expression of concern, saying the secretariat does not have the authority to make recommendations to member states.