ITUC Statement on Egypt

The ITUC is deeply shocked at the events of 14 August on Rabaa Al’Adaouia and Nahda squares in Cairo and the continuing violence which has seen some 20 churches and dozens of government buildings burnt. More than 600 people were killed including 43 police, and hundreds more injured, when security forces moved on camps of supporters of Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood.

Reports from Egypt indicate that at least 11 supporters of the interim authorities had been kidnapped, tortured and killed inside the camps since late June.

“This appalling cycle of violence must stop immediately, and the call of the UN Security Council for maximum restraint must be heeded by all. The only way forward for Egypt is through dialogue with all democratic forces and the absolute rejection of violence. The alternative is the risk of prolonged and bloody civil conflict,” said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow. “The Egyptian people have the right to live in peace, and the authorities have an obligation to protect all people from violence in full compliance with the rule of law.”

The ITUC calls on the interim authorities to respect their pledge to establish a democratic and civil political system through dialogue with forces that clearly and categorically reject all forms of violence, which guarantees human rights including the rights of women, religious minorities and the rights of working people. Social justice and the right of workers to defend their interests through their own free and independent organisations must be recognised as cornerstones of a democratic future for Egypt.

Photo: Hossam el-Hamalawy