AP TELEVISION - AP CLIENTS ONLY
Beijing - 24 June 2013
1. Medium shot of executive behind barred window
2. Shot of US and Chinese flags flying atop factory
3. Tilt pan from factory sign to window where executive is located
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Charles 'Chip' Starnes, Co-owner, Specialty Medical Supplies: (Transcript Below)
5. Exterior of factory
6. Various of US Embassy officials visiting Starnes at the factory
7. Wide shot of factory building
8. Medium shot of Starnes speaking
9. Wide shot of officials at the scene
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Patrick Ventrell, State Department Spokesman: (Transcript Below)
11. Shot of worker going into building (AP CANNOT CONFIRM IF THESE WORKERS ARE AMONGST THE ONES SAID TO BE HOLDING STARNES)
12. Pan of officials at scene
13. Various shots of workers on the grounds (AP CANNOT CONFIRM IF THESE WORKERS ARE AMONGST THE ONES SAID TO BE HOLDING STARNES)
A U-S EXECUTIVE CLAIMS HE HAS BEEN HELD CAPTIVE FOR FOUR DAYS AT HIS MEDICAL SUPPLY PLANT IN BEIJING. SCORES OF WORKERS HAVE BLOCKED ALL EXITS-- IN A STANDOFF OVER SEVERANCE PACKAGES.
SPEAKING THROUGH A BARRED WINDOW, CHARLES 'CHIP' STARNES SAYS THE SITUATION IS OUT OF CONTROL.
SOUNDBITE (English) Charles 'Chip' Starnes: Can't walk anywhere, if I walk anywhere I'm surrounded by 15-20 people. If I walk to the gate, they are all strong-on-bound.
STARNES IS A CO-OWNER OF SPECIALTY MEDICAL SUPPLIES--A COMPANY PLANNING TO SHIFT SOME OF ITS OPERATIONS TO INDIA.
HE SAYS HE ARRIVED IN BEIJING LAST TUESDAY TO OFFER SEVERANCE PACKAGES TO LAIDOFF WORKERS WHEN OTHER EMPLOYEES BEGAN TO DEMAND SIMILAR COMPENSATION. STARNES SAYS THE COMPANY HAD NO PLANS TO TERMINATE THEIR POSITIONS.
DESPITE EFFORTS BY THE U-S EMBASSY AND LOCAL POLICE, THE SITUATION REMAINS AT A STANDSTILL. WORKERS SEEN WANDERING THE GROUNDS REFUSED TO SPEAK TO PEOPLE GATHERED OUTSIDE.
IN CHINA IT IS NOT UNCOMMON FOR WORKERS TO DETAIN MANAGERS OVER PAY DISPUTES.
SOUNDBITE (English) Patrick Ventrell, State Department Spokesman: We're actively monitoring the situation and we ask that the Chinese government work with appropriate authorities to ensure his safety and security. And we're in contact with the U.S. citizen and providing appropriate consular assistance.
FOR NOW, STARNES REMAINS A PRISONER IN HIS OWN FACTORY.