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Tradeunionists condemn occupation regime's tactics
2002-10-31 09:38:22

Nicosia, Oct 31 (CNA) -- A demonstration to condemn the violation of the right of Turkish Cypriot trade unionists to take part in the 4th All Cyprus Trade Union Forum, due to begin Thursday in Nicosia, was held at UN-controlled Ledra Palace checkpoint by Greek Cypriot trade unions PEO, SEK, PASIDY, ETYK, DEOK, POED, OELMEK, POAS and OLTEK. The forum will eventually be held abroad.

A resolution approved by the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot trade unions, and read at the gathering by PEO General Secretary Bambis Kiritsis, was likely to be read at similar gatherings in the occupied areas by Turkish Cypriot unions DEV-IS, TURK-SEN, KTAMS, KTOS, KTOEOS, KOOP-SEN, BES and BASIN-SEN.

The resolution was handed to Acting Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and UNFICYP Chief of Mission, Zbigniew Wlosowicz. and in the next few days will be presented to the Nicosia-based ambassadors of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.|

The unions note that they have in the "last three years been facing continuous obstructions and prohibitions by the Turkish Cypriot authorities, mainly on the freedom of movement and contact with its members leading to the prevention of meeting either in the north, south or UN controlled area of Ledra Palace, thus hindering the activities of the Permanent Committee for the realisation of its common programmes".

They noted that despite all local and international initiatives to overcome the persistent stand of the Turkish Cypriot authorities, "no progress has been made in achieving the lifting of all restrictions concerning the easy, free and unimpeded movement of the members that would facilitate the meeting of the 4th All Cyprus Trade Union Forum and its Committees and sub-committees".

The G/C and T/C trade unions said "today, we are witnessing the second forced and involuntary" postponement of the Forum, which was initially set for 20-22 February 2002 but was also postponed due to restrictions imposed by the Turkish Cypriot authorities.

The trade unions condemned the violations and urged the international community to provide "further assistance for overcoming the obstructions imposed by the Turkish Cypriot authorities".

They stressed that "it should be well comprehended that such obstinate initiatives can and will not prevent the All Cyprus Trade Union Forum from its struggle for the attainment of its objectives which have a lion's share of international and local acceptance".

SEK General Secretary Demetris Kittenis said the next Forum, which will be held in the near future, might possibly take place in Budapest with the technical assistance of the Confederation of European Trade Unions.

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