Sanctions against the Zimbabwe should continue
INTERNATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFEDERATION (ITUC)
ITUC OnLine 31/201206
ITUC and ETUC call on the EU to maintains sanctions against the Zimbabwe government
Brussels, 20 December 2006 (ITUC Online): The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) have written to the European Commissioners for External Relations and for Development and Humanitarian Aid, urging the EU not to drop its 'smart sanctions' against the Zimbabwe government.
The measures come up for review early in 2007. "At a time when trade unionists in Zimbabwe have been so savagely attacked and as the Zimbabwean economy descends into disaster, it would send completely the wrong signal if the EU backed down on sanctions now," said ITUC General Secretary Guy Ryder and ETUC General Secretary John Monks in their joint letter to Commissioners Benita Ferrero-Waldner and Louis Michel.
The ETUC has contacted its EU affiliates asking them to put pressure on their national governments to keep the sanctions regime in place.
The EU sanctions, adopted in 2002, include an arms embargo, a freeze on assets, and visa restrictions on senior officials. The ITUC and ETUC are concerned that the Zimbabwe government is staging a concerted bid to get these measures repealed next year, despite the fact that it has failed to meet the EU's benchmarks for respect of trade union and human rights.
In September 2006, trade unionists around the world staged a day of action in solidarity with workers beaten and arrested by the Zimbabwe authorities.