Iraqi Oil Workers Declare Tactical Victory


Below is the full translation of a message received today [by U.S. Labor Against the War], Monday 11 June 2007, from Hassan Juma’a, president of the Federation of Oil Union (IFOU) declaring a tactical victory in the ongoing struggle of Iraqi oil workers.

On behalf of Naftana, we would like to extend our thanks to all, from across the world, who have campaigned and written to express solidarity with the oil workers and the IFOU. Naftana will continue to relay news of the oil workers in their struggle to improve living and working conditions, assert trade union rights and protect Iraq’s oil from the proposed oil law, championed by the occupation governments. Naftana

Naftana is an independent UK-based committee supporting democratic trade unionism in Iraq. It works in solidarity with the IFOU. It strives to publicise the union’s struggle for Iraqi social and economic rights and its stand against the privatisation of Iraqi oil demanded by the occupying powers. For more information see the IFOU’s website.

Full text of message:

Warm greetings,

We would like to inform you of the latest developments in the oil workers strike in the south.

Finally the workers have won in demanding their legitimate rights. That is why an enlarged meeting was held with his excellency the minister of State for the Parliament Affairs lasting five hours resulting in the cessation of all the failings resulting from the conduct of the Iraqi Ministry of Oil and the irresponsible stance of the oil minister. Most of the issues within the remit of the prime minister were dealt with.

The meeting was very successful, because the minister represented the prime minister. The activation of the committee formed by the prime minister to deal with the outstanding problems was affirmed. And after deliberations within our union, the two sides agreed to halt the strike and to use dialogue in dealings to resolve the outstanding issues. On the other hand, all problems were presented to His Eminence Sayyid Sistani, and the Iraqi ministry of oil was reprimanded for its improper conduct.

Therefore, we would like to say to all that the workers will is indestructible. The workers can achieve what they want by the means available to them and their strength. And the oil workers are very strong, because they have a legitimate right. the workers have scored a third victory in demanding their rights.

Long live the Iraqi working class.

Regards, Hassan Juma’a Awwad

For further information contact:

Sami Ramadani — 07863 138748 sami.ramadani@londonmet.ac.uk

Kamil Mahdi — k.a.mahdi@exeter.ac.uk

Sabah Jawad — 07985 336886 sabah.jawad@idao.org