The UGTT union federation, which represents hundreds of thousands of Tunisian workers, has called a general strike on 13 December in response to attacks on its offices by thugs affiliated to the ruling Islamist Ennahda Party. (Read the full statement here in French)
Mohamed Sghaeir Saihi, deputy secretary of the UGTT’s regional executive in the Kasserine region said that there were regional general strikes in Kasserine, Gafsa, Sidi Bouzid and Sfax on Thursday 6 December. “We organized a big march protesting against Ennahdha militia which attacked trade unionsts in Tunis last tuesday at the UGTT’s head offices. Yesterday the UGTT executive met and announced a general strike for 13 December. The UGTT will not reverse this decision unless the government admits that these militias are illegal and takes the decision stop them acting on the name of the revolution.”
These latest developments follow weeks of rising anger in the impoverished provinical towns of the Tunisian interior which were the birthplace of the revolution. Unemployed youth and activists from the regional UGTT unions in Siliana took to the streets in their thousands early in December to protest at unemployment and poverty. They faced a bloody onslaught by the police and army, sent by the Ennahda-led government which accused the UGTT of fomenting rebellion.
What you can do:
- Send messages of solidarity for the Tunisian strikes and protests to firstname.lastname@example.org for forwarding to colleagues in the UGTT
- Print out this sign “I support the UGTT” and send a solidarity picture with workmates and colleagues to us and we’ll publish online.
- Read more about the struggle for social justice in Kasserine, and Mohamed Sghaeir’s recent visit to the UK at the invitation of the NUT local associations in Oxford and Ealing