Iraq: Trade Unions Banned in the Electricity Sector

The ITUC strongly protest against the Ministerial Order, Issue 22 244, of the Iraqi Government. This Order clearly violates trade union rights.

According to the information received by the ITUC, the Ministerial Order, issued by the Minister of Electricity, prohibits all trade union activities in the electricity sector and orders the ministry, in coordination with the police, to close all trade union offices and take control of the trade unions assets, properties, documents, furniture and computers. It also gives to the police the authority to arrest any trade unionist who tries to protest against the Ministerial Order, under the terrorism act of 2005.

“This is totally unacceptable”, said Sharan Burrow, ITUC general secretary. “This is nothing else but a case of intimidation of free, independent and democratic trade unions. In a letter to the Iraqi Government, the ITUC urges Prime Minister Mr. Nori Al-Maliki to take without delay all necessary measures to stop this unjust government action.

"The Iraqis authorities must take urgent and effective measures to guarantee the freedom of association in the electricity sector," insisted ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow. Iraq, as a member of the ILO, is bound by international treaties, including ILO Convention 87 on freedom of association.

For more information, please contact the ITUC Press Department on 32 2 224 02 04 or + 32 476 62 10 18
Photo: Pierre J.