Major Trade Union Federations Call on Iran to Release Detained Workers’ Rights Activists
The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL–CIO) have called on Iranian authorities to release detained workers’ rights activists including Esmail Bakhshi and Sepideh Qoliyan.
*Letters by the ITUC and AFL-CIO were sent to Iranian leaders one month after a group of Haft Tappeh sugar mill workers in the city of Ahvaz, Khuzestan Province called on the International Labor Organization (ILO) to investigate the suppression of workers’ rights protests there.
“We urge the Iranian authorities to drop charges and release the detained trade unionists in line with the recommendations of the Committee on Freedom of Association of the International Labor Organisation,” said the AFL–CIO’s International Director Cathy Feingold in a letter addressing Iran’s Ambassador to the UN Majid Takht Ravanchi. “In addition, we call on your government to ensure full payment of wages and benefits to all current and retired Haft Tappeh workers; recognition of the union as the workers’ legal representative; reinstatement of all unjustly terminated workers; and the company’s return to government ownership.”
Eighty-nine unions from around the world have endorsed the ITUC’s letter, which has not yet been made public. Click here for a listing of those unions and more information about the trade unions’ calls.
*This article was modified on August 13, 2019, to reflect that a group of workers published an open letter addressing the ILO in June 2019 but have not submitted an official complaint.