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Samsung denies unsafe factory conditions gave workers cancer

Samsung is denying that dangerous working conditions in one of its chip-production plants were responsible for two workers dying of leukaemia, citing a study the company itself commissioned.

Samsung denies dangerous working conditions in one of its chip production plants were responsible for two workers dying of leukaemia, according to an AFP report.

A South Korean court last month ruled there was a connection between the deaths of the two workers and conditions in the semiconductor factory, which uses harmful chemicals. Samsung has hit back at the judgement, citing a study that it commissioned itself that concluded the factories were safe.

Samsung says the study found its operation to be within acceptable industry standards. The study was conducted by a US firm called Environ International, and found the exposure of the two workers to be well below dangerous levels.

But because Samsung itself commissioned the investigation, and because it hasn't released the contents of the study, not everyone is satisfied.

The court that ruled the deaths were connected decided the government owes the employees' families compensation, according to the Wall Street Journal. The court ruled against similar claims by four other employees at the plant.

Activist groups say around 60 Samsung chip factory workers have been diagnosed with leukaemia or lymphoma, and that 20 have died. Samsung employs 30,000 people across 14 sites at its plants in Seoul.

Judging the truth behind the matter will be tricky. Samsung says it won't disclose the results of the Environ study yet, and that the report could compromise trade secrets.

In other Samsung news, Apple is trying to block the sale of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the US.