Monday, March 26, 2007

Seoul, South Korea - Protesters opposed to a free-trade agreement between the governments of the United States and South Korea scuffled with police today near the U.S. embassy. Yesterday demonstrators were stopped by police as they attempted to march on the President House.

Trade negotiators have only a few days to resolve their differences or any agreement they come to will have a difficult time getting approved by the U.S. congress. Under U.S. President George W. Bush's "fast-track" trade promotion authority, U.S. officials have until April 2 to submit a deal for a mandatory 90-day congressional review for a simple yes-or-no vote without the option of being able to tack on any amendments.

While they were working against the clock to come to a consensus eight activists opposed to a deal burst into the conference room shouting "No to Korea-US FTA." Protests are likely to intensify in the lead-up to the deadline.