Support for Turkey’s KESK confederation concerning the imprisoned trade union members


On behalf of the trade union organisations represented by the European Economic and Social Committee’s Employees’ Group, I would like to express our full solidarity with Sami Evren, president of KESK, concerning the trade union members who have been arrested and are still being held unfairly in Turkish prisons.

Not only does this recent, serious breach of the fundamental rights of KESK trade union members represent a threat to all Turkish citizens and a real attack on the freedom of association, expression and demonstration, but it significantly hampers Turkey’s progress towards European Union membership.

Turkey’s trade union organisations joined the European Trade Union Confederation some years ago. We are working together so that the European Union may provide the guarantee of peace, democracy and wellbeing for Turkish citizens. We therefore support KESK in calling upon the Turkish government to put an immediate stop to any attack on trade union freedoms. We demand that the imprisoned trade unionists be released immediately and that true dialogue be reopened with the social partners in order to deal with and overcome the economic crisis.

The EESC’s Employees’ Group also calls upon the European institutions to become more closely involved in monitoring respect for human and trade union rights in Turkey, and to denounce any infringements thereof.

Georgios DASSIS
President of the Workers’ Group


To read the support letter, please click here.