World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Man Utd, FC Barcelona Urged to Raise Sacked Worker Plight

8 August 2012

Manchester United and FC Barcelona Urged To Raise Plight Of 305 Workers Sacked By Sponsor Turkish Airlines

On the day of their friendly match in Gotenborg, the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) has today (8 August) written to the chief executive of Manchester United and the president of FC Barcelona asking them to use their influence with official sponsor Turkish Airlines over its sacking of 305 workers.

In the letters to David Gill and Sandro Rosell i Feliu, ITF general secretary David Cockroft described the background to the dispute between the Turkish Airlines management and the workers’ union, ITF affiliate Hava-Is.

He urged both men to use their clubs’ global reputations and their leverage now, “and to urge the Turkish Airlines management to reconsider its unnecessarily heavy-handed action and to participate in good faith in a dialogue with the union with the intention of finding an equitable and positive outcome to the dispute”.

To David Gill, he cited “Manchester United’s … mission to be socially responsible” and welcomed “the club’s commitment to tackling environmental and social issues at regional, national and international level”.

To Sandro Rosell i Feliu, he praised FC Barcelona’s “values and historical association with the defence of democratic rights and freedom”.

David Cockroft said: “We and our affiliates would much rather work with good employers to establish best practice in the aviation industry and to address the huge challenges that we face, but when this kind of victimisation happens we have no choice but to act. Despite meetings between the ITF and Turkish government representatives in Geneva and London to try to find a resolution to the dispute, talks have failed, apparently due to a lack of willingness on the part of the airline’s management to achieve a mutually acceptable solution.”

On the same day, the ITF has released a short video, Brutally Yours, as part of its global campaign against the sackings.

In May this year, Turkish Airlines sacked 305 of its employees by text message, phone or email simply for protesting against a proposed amendment to the Turkish labour law which would remove their right to strike – something that runs contrary to the International Labour Organisation’s Convention 87 concerning freedom of association and protection of the right to organise, to which Turkey is a signatory. The amendment was rushed through and took effect on 3 June 2012.

Notes to editors:

1. The campaign has mobilised international support for the workers and their trade union, Hava-Is. More information is available on the campaign website

2. An online petition on Labour Start has already attracted nearly 7,000 protest emails to Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan and Turkish Airlines CEO Hamdi Topcu -


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Tale Of Two Pandemics: Follow The Science And Do Not Forget One At The Cost Of The Other

Covid-19 has posed innumerable health, economic, and social challenges for all, including people living with HIV. It has exposed the fragility of health systems around the globe and has diverted political attention and funding from other infectious diseases like TB and HIV... More>>

UN: Rights Chief Calls For Prompt Release Of Protestors Held In Cuba
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on Friday called for the prompt release of protestors and journalists detained during anti-government demonstrations in Cuba, some of whom are being held incommunicado... More>>

Scarce Goods: Isolating Daraa Al-Balad Threatens 40,000 With Starvation

The siege imposed by the Syrian government forces on Daraa al-Balad since June 24 would lead to serious humanitarian repercussions if it continues, Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor said in a statement on July 15, calling for lifting the siege urgently and allowing the entry of basic humanitarian supplies... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Shaping The Future Of Food Systems: Thousands Commit To Dialogues Amidst The COVID-19 Pandemic

More than 130 governments are making food systems a top priority amid the pandemic and committing to an unprecedented programme of Dialogues in the run up to the UN Food Systems Summit in September... More>>

UN: Play:Fair For People And Planet – A Major United Nations Music Activation
organized by the UN SDG Action Campaign in partnership with Music Innovation Hub, Keychange, the city of Milan, the Milan Triennale, and partners from the SDG Music Network, will be held at an unexpected location in the center of Milan, Italy, taking into account safety measures with a limited on-site audience consisting of activists and fans... More>>

UN: Next 18 Months Seen As Pivotal In Global Efforts To Achieve Key Goals

Next 18 months seen as pivotal in global efforts to reverse punishing pandemic impacts and boost actions to achieve key goals - Even as pandemic erases decades of gains in development, response efforts show signs of renewed global commitment to accelerate SDG progress... More>>