Nederlandse organisaties in protest tegen stakingsverbod Turkije

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Vandaag is de Internationale Dag van het Recht op Staking. TIE-Netherlands, in samenwerking met SOMO, DIDF, Borderless, Grenzeloos, Doorbraak en XminY, brengen gezamenlijk een protestverklaring uit waarin ze zich uitspreken tegen het recentelijk afgekondigde stakingsverbod in de metaal sector in Turkije

Eerder berichtte TIE al over de grote metaalstaking in Turkije die de onafhankelijke Metaalbond Birlesik Metal-Is eind Januari organiseerde. Het beloofde een van de grootste metaalstakingen ooit in Turkije te worden. Aanleiding was een industrieel conflict met de Turkse werkgevers organisatie MESS (zie deze pagina voor meer achtergrond). Een paar dagen nadat duizenden metaalwerkers het werk hadden neergelegd verklaarde de Turkse regering per decreet de staking illegaal. Ze gebruikte hiervoor anti-terrorisme wetgeving op basis van het argument dat de staking de ‘nationale veiligheid’ van het land zou schaden; natuurlijk een sterk staaltje vakbondsrechten schendingen (zie hier voor meer achtergrond).

In het kader van deze interne precaire situatie (stakende metaalwerkers kunnen nu ‘gewoon’ ontslagen worden), vraagt Birlesik Metal-Is om internationale solidariteitsverklaringen die het stakingsverbod veroordelen. TIE-Netherlands nam het initiatief voor het opstellen van een dergelijke verklaring die mede werd ondertekend door Stichting Onderzoek Multinationale Ondernemingen (SOMO), de Federatie van Demokratische Verenigingen van Arbeiders uit Turkije in Nederland – DIDF, Borderless, Grenzeloos, Doobraak en XminY Actiefonds. Vakbond FNV stelde een protestbrief op. Hieronder de tekst van de verklaring (ook te downloaden onderaan de pagina), organisaties geïnteresseerd om nog mede te ondertekenen kunnen nog steeds contact opnemen met TIE-Netherlands via marten@tie-netherlands.nl.

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‘National security’ misused to protect business interests

Letter protesting the Decree of the Cabinet of Turkey to Postpone the Strikes in Metal Industry

The Netherlands based civil society organisations signed below urge the Turkish government to withdraw the decree postponing the strike for decent wages in the metal industry and create a political environment whereby free collective bargaining negotiations can take place. The signed organisations are working for the advancement of labour rights in the Netherlands, Turkey, and on an international level (some in close contact with Birleşik Metal-İş). It is our strong conviction that the act of striking is one of the most important ways to achieve the respect of labour rights and tackle labour rights violations. We are therefore outraged to learn that the Turkish Cabinet has postponed, in reality banned, the strike in the metal industry covering 38 companies that Birleşik Metal-İş partly launched on 29 January 2015 and would start on 19 February 2015 in ten different cities of Turkey. We vehemently protest this act to ban these legitimate strikes.

Banning the strike on a presumed threat to  “national security” – as stated in the decree published in the Official Gazette from 30 January 2015 ­ is an undemocratic measure that is in breach of Turkey’s international commitments, and contrary to Turkey’s aim to align itself with EU human rights standards. We consider this ban a clear violation of the right to strike, which is one of the fundamental rights of workers, guaranteed by the Constitution of Turkey as well as in international conventions ratified by your Government and the jurisprudence of the International Labour Organization (ILO).

By using national security grounds to ban strikes, the Turkish Government is misusing Article 6356 of the Turkish Law on Trade Unions and Collective Labour Agreement. In particular, since the AKP government came to power, a series of strikes in the rubber, glass, mining and metal sectors have been banned arguing that they are “prejudicial to national security”. Using this pretext to ban a strike in manufacturing sectors does not have any rational or legal grounds. Instead, it is our firm conviction that the Government is favouring business interests rather than protecting the rights of workers.

The Turkish Government should know that its decision to ban the strikes constitutes a breach of international labour norms and standards. As a matter of fact, the ILO’s Committee on Freedom of Association ruled that the Government of Turkey, in suspending a strike in the sector on the grounds that the strike would be a threat to national security, was in violation of the principles of freedom of association. We would like to recall that the very same ILO Committee noted with regret the decision of the Council of Ministers to suspend a strike on grounds of national security, without any apparent relationship between the industries in question (tire, glass, municipality services and state-run undertakings) and national security.  

The global union movement receives daily reports of brutal labour rights violations being committed in Turkey. In view of all these facts, it must be concluded that fundamental workers’ rights – particularly the right to strike – are not being respected in Turkey. This must come to an end.

Therefore, the undersigned call on the Turkish Government to respect fundamental workers’ rights. We stand firm in solidarity with the striking metalworkers, who demand decent wages through their legitimate right to strike. Once again we urge the Turkish government to withdraw the decree postponing the strike in the metal industry called by Birleşik Metal-İş, and create a proper environment whereby free collective bargaining negotiations can take place.

 

Signed,

Transnationals Information Exchange (TIE)- Netherlands.

 

 

Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO)

 

 

DIDF (Federation of Democratic Associations of Turkish Workers in the Netherlands)- Nederland

 

 

Grenzeloos

 

 

Borderless

 

 

 

Doorbraak

 

 

XminY – Action Fund

 

 

 

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