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The Taiwanese Apple supplier Foxconn, which operates the plant in the Chinese metropolis Zhengzhou, confirmed the clashes on Wednesday. “Regarding the violent acts, the company will continue to communicate with employees and the government to prevent similar things from happening again in the future,” Foxconn said.
As seen in videos shared on social media on Wednesday, tumultuous scenes erupted around the plant both at night and in daylight. Hundreds of workers gathered and marched against a large contingent of security forces. Police officers with batons and plastic shields tried to push people back. Clashes ensued. You could also see how some workers were lying on the ground, apparently injured.
A few weeks ago, there was unrest around the Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou, where around 200,000 people work. Thousands of employees had fled for fear of infection or the strict measures. Foxconn then offered employees higher wages if they chose to return despite the restrictions. But the plant continued to operate in a so-called “closed circuit”. Employees were not allowed to leave the factory premises.
Foxconn said Wednesday it had received questions from new employees about their salaries. These would be paid out as provided for in the contracts. Rumors that employees have to share their accommodation with infected colleagues are wrong.
Last week there were also protests against the government’s corona measures in the southern Chinese metropolis of Guangzhou. Angry migrant workers tore down numerous barricades there.
While most countries around the world are trying to live with the virus, China is still pursuing a strict zero-Covid strategy of lockdowns, mass daily testing, strict control, contact tracing and forced quarantine. Nevertheless, the number of new infections has increased sharply again in the past few weeks. The situation seems increasingly confusing./jpt/DP/mis
Apple shares, listed on the NASDAQ, temporarily lost 0.25 percent to 149.80 US dollars before the market.
Shanghai (Reuters) / BEIJING (dpa-AFX)
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