From the TUC

Act now to defend Iraqi oil union leader

30 May 2011, By

The TUC is supporting a Labour Start appeal to defend the President of the Kirkuk Oil and Gas Workers Union, Jamal Abdul-Jabbar who has been forcibly relocated by his employers. International union protests have prevented this sort of management harassment before. The Northern Oil Company of Iraq has forcibly relocated the President of the Kirkuk Oil and Gas Workers Union, Jamal Abdul-Jabbar, to a remote location. Jamal recently led a major walk out in support of better rights for contract workers and for a better, safer working environment. Act now to defend Kamal by taking part in the global Labour Start e-action. Defending unions anywhere means building stronger unions everywhere.This forced relocation is a common tactic of oil sector employers in Iraq hoping to remove union activists from their positions in the union, and deter other workers from taking action, but global pressure from unions often prevents such management bullying, so we are appealing for urgent action – not least because the International Labour Conference is taking place in Geneva and the Iraqi Government, which controls the Northern Oil Company, will be particularly sensitive to further allegations of trade union repression. The Northern Oil Company’s action has been condemned by the General Federation of Iraqi Workers and the ICEM (to both of which the Kirkuk union is affiliated) and the TUC.