Protests demand union rights in Iran

Published: 21 May 2009

World protests to demand union rights for Iranian workers

Four global union organisations representing over 170 million workers have called a worldwide action day on June 26 to demand justice for Iranian workers. Demonstrations will take place outside Iranian embassies and consulates to protest the ongoing denial of rights and arrests of trade unionists within the country.

The ITUC (International Trade Union Confederation), EI (Education International), ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation), IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers' Associations) are forming a coalition for the event, which is the latest move in an ongoing campaign to secure justice and trade union rights inside Iran. They are calling for the immediate and unconditional release of jailed trade unionist members and leaders including Mansour Osanloo, Ebrahim Madadi, Farzad Kamangar and the five leaders of the Haft Tapeh Sugarworkers' Union, recently sentenced to a year in prison, as well as the release of trade unionists arrested in Tehran on May Day. Amnesty International has backed this campaign.

Guy Ryder, ITUC General Secretary explained: 'Each of these organisations has campaigned to protect their colleagues in Iran, and now we are all joining forces to do it even more effectively.'

'We have exhausted all avenues of reasonable dialogue to persuade the government of Iran to allow basic human and trade union rights. Their answer has been repression and arrests. Given this failure we must take to the streets to demonstrate that the world is watching what they are doing and what is happening to our colleagues within the country.'


For more details please contact

ITF. Press officer Sam Dawson. Tel: +44 (0)20 7940 9260. Email:

ITUC. Press Officer Mathieu Debroux. Tel: +32(0)2 22 40 204. Email:

EI. Nancy Knickerbocker. Tel: +32 (0)2 22 40 611. Email:

IUF. Peter Rossman. Email:



Authorised by P Crumlin, Maritime Union of Australia, Sydney