- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 14, 2009

BEIJING (AP) - Hundreds of workers at a textile factory in southern China blocked roads Tuesday, in a second day of protests over unpaid wages, an employee said.

The protests come as a collapse in demand for Chinese exports has closed factories and wiped out at least 20 million jobs. Communist leaders worry that more job losses and unpaid wages could result in mass protests.

More than 400 employees at Jindi Industry Group Co. in Chongqing city took to the streets for the second day, complaining they have not been paid for nearly three months, said an employee at the company, who would give only his surname, Wang.

The workers blocked a main road and disrupted traffic in front of the company offices in hopes of attracting government attention and getting their back pay of $56 a month, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Calls to the Chongqing Police Bureau rang unanswered Tuesday.

Jindi, which employs 6,500 people, cannot afford to pay its employees because demand for China’s textiles has fallen sharply during the financial crisis, Xinhua said, citing a local government official.

In neighboring Hunan province, hundreds of taxi drivers resumed work Monday following violent riots over rising taxi fees that led to 11 people being detained over the weekend.

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