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S.Korean farmers protest against APEC

SEOUL, Nov. 15 (UPI) -- Some 12,000 South Korean farmers clashed with police Tuesday as they launched a violent protest against APEC and globalization.

Clashes erupted as angry protesters kicked, punched and hurled water bottles at riot police deployed to prevent demonstrators from entering the National Assembly building in central Seoul.

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More than 70 protestors and 10 police were injured, according to police. Three policy buses were burned in the protest.

Farmers chanted anti-U.S. and anti-APEC slogans. They opposed the Seoul government's plans for greater liberalization of the nation's rice market.

"The government must come up with realistic policies for the rice market and the farming industry to allow farmers to live comfortably," said a leader of the Korean Advanced Farmers Federation that organized the protest rally.

The rally followed the death of a South Korean farmer, who allegedly committed suicide early Friday morning to protest the summit of leaders from 21 member economies of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation bloc.

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