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Global Unions and their members believe that the right to peaceful demonstration and freedom of assembly are basic elements of genuine democracy. However, instead of respecting that right, the Erdoğan Government appears to engage in repression as a regular practice. For example, still fresh in our minds are the 2013 May Day celebrations, which turned to bloodshed after attacks on demonstrators by the security forces.
We are doubly concerned that since the 2011 elections, fundamental trade union rights have been denied both legally and illegally, and that there has been a marked increase in such practices. Laws have been adopted that establish greater barriers to trade union recognition and discourage rather than encourage the exercise of trade union rights. There has been inaction against employers who deny workers' fundamental rights, abuses have persisted in the judiciary system, strikes that meet the criteria for being legal have been prevented, and violent attacks have been carried out on trade unionists. These developments have been coupled with limits on freedom of assembly and expression that constitute serious attacks on fundamental human rights and democracy.
The Global Unions unreservedly support the international solidarity actions that start on 21-22 June and urgently call on the government of Turkey to address the following:
Turkey and its people deserve much better. They deserve democracy and the protection of all their human rights, including trade union rights. It is urgent that the Turkish government moves in that direction in the crucial days and weeks ahead.