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Staff at S. Korean broadcaster end long strike

Seoul, June 8, 2012 (AFP) - Journalists and programme directors at South Korea's largest broadcasting company KBS on Friday ended a protracted strike called to press for fair reporting, a union spokesman said.

The 94-day-old walkout ended after one of KBS's two labour unions and the management agreed measures to guarantee fairness at the state broadcaster, especially ahead of the presidential election in December.

A committee led by the company's president and the labour union chief will review news reports and programmes to ensure unbiased reporting, union spokesman Nam Chul-Woo told AFP.

A new union at KBS with 1,200 members had struck in protest at alleged bias in favour of the conservative government of President Lee Myung-Bak and the ruling New Frontier Party.

The other union with 2,800 members did not join the stoppage.

Staff at four other media outlets are continuing a strike which has lasted for several months in protest at alleged interference in news coverage.

They include two broadcasting companies MBC and YTN, the national Yonhap news agency and the Kookmin Daily, which is operated by a Christian church.

Union leaders say the government has been directly and indirectly involved in the appointment of their managements in an attempt to control news content.

Government officials deny interference in news reporting.


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