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TEKEL workers are struggling for a decent work …

Dear Colluague,

I am writing this letter to give you UPDATEs about TEKEL workers demonstrations and inform you that we support the workers who are struggling for R16;job security’.

As you know, TEKEL tobacco workers are demonstrating in Ankara for more than a month in order to defend their job security and their trade UNION rights and freedoms. These demonstratios are going on against the worst weather conditions in recent years and police violence.

TEKEL workers demonstrations are supported by al democratic and progressive organisation in Turkey. Many trade UNIONs including the DISK affiliates and civil society organizations, organized many events in order to show their support and solidarity with TEKEL workers. Solidarity activities are growing bigger in every corner of the country.

As DISK, by knowing that the TEKEL workers are not just struggling for themselves but they are struggling against privatization and for common benefit of working class, we see the TEKEL workers struggle as our own struggle. It is a very important development for labour movement in our country that the trade UNIONs and other progressive forces are uniting.

Trade UNION confederations published a joint declaration and give the government 26 January 2010 as the deadline to solve this problem. We declared that we will come together again on 26th of January and we will organize a solidarity strike and use our power which is coming from the production.

But the things told by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in several occasions shows us again how trade UNION freedoms and labor rights are treated in this country.

Prime Minister blamed the workers who are opposing the loss of their social rights and trade UNION rights and he blamed the trade UNIONists as provocateurs. Prime Minister claimed that the workers are getting their salaries without earning them and he tried to show the trade UNIONs as criminal organizations. Addition to these Prime Minister, told that TEKEL workers rights cannot be paid by showing the unemployment as excuse.

Workers tents are wanted to be removed with the reason that they are polluting the environment. Many times tear gasses and pressure water used against the worker demonstrations.

TEKEL workers are struggling for a decent work and they defend the rights given to them by national and international law. We are declaring one more time with the occaison of this letter, as DISK, we will support the TEKEL workers struggle till the end, we will follow the joint decisions without exception. We will fight for workers to have their basic rights. We won’t let workers search for their rights and trade UNION activities to be shown as a criminal act.

With my best wishes,

Süleyman Çelebi



Suleyman Celebi, the President of DISK, sent a letter to ETUC and EFFAT about the demonstrations of Tekel Tobacco Workers in Turkey. 25.01.2010

Turkish / Türkçe: