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Patriot Coal protest help in Charleston, West Virginia

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Thousands of people are protesting Patriot Coal Corp.'s bankruptcy reorganization plan in downtown Charleston, West Virginia.

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   The protesters gathered at the Charleston Civic Center for a rally organized by the United Mine Workers of America. They heard from speakers including Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin before walking a short distance to protest outside Patriot Coal's West Virginia offices at Laidley Tower.

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   Last week, the House of Delegates called for bankrupt Patriot Coal to honor its pension and benefit commitments to some 23,000 retired miners and their dependents.

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   St. Louis-based Patriot is trying shed some of that $1.6 billion liability as it restructures. Patriot contends the move is needed to save 4,000 existing jobs.

 

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