Since August 9, 2020, the Belarusian authorities have engaged in a campaign of mass terror, attacking citizens participating in peaceful protests denouncing election fraud. Despite the repression, mass mobilizations, including workers and students, are taking place daily to demand an end to the dictatorship.
As a result of the police and special forces’ disproportionate, unprecedented and growing use of force:
• at least 10 people have died
• more than 80 people are missing
• more than 5,000 people, among them seniors, women, adolescents, and even children have been injured
• approximately 30,000 civilians have been arbitrarily detained or fined
While state-controlled federations of trade unions attempt to repress workers’ democratic actions, workers are joining independent unions like the IUF affiliated BITU whose membership has doubled since protests began with new members in dairy, breweries and tobacco.
The IUF expresses its solidarity with BITU and the workers of Belarus. The emergency resolution of the IUF Executive Committee:
The IUF Executive Committee stands with Belarus
The IUF strongly condemns the wave of state violence in Belarus. We call on the UN, the European Union and all states to use all political and economic means to assist the democratic movement in Belarus.
We call on all the companies in the IUF sectors to immediately take all necessary measures and fulfil due diligence to ensure their own enterprises and business partners are not involved in the human rights violations and that all their employees are able to fully participate in any civil activity without fear of discrimination.
We call on all the organisations of the labour movement to immediately break off all relations with affiliates of the state-controlled Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus, which is an integral part of the repressive system, and to provide all possible aid to the members of the Congress of Democratic Trade Unions.
“Decade after decade we felt thirsty for democracy and now Belarus rebelled. We changed a lot, transferring this thirst into passion to fight for freedom. And we know that there is no way back, we have no choice but to win,” said Maksim Poznyakov, BITU President.
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