The WFTU President addressed the plenary session of 107th International Labour Conference on Monday 4 June 2018
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the World Federation of Trade Unions I salute this plenary session, the delegates of Trade Unions and workers of all countries.

From this podium, we express our internationalist solidarity with the people of Palestine who are suffering hard from the Israeli occupation and we condemn the new cold-blooded murders of unarmed Palestinian people in Gaza by the Israeli army. We condemn the moving of US embassy in Jerusalem; to us, Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Palestine.

At international level, for one more year the financial situation of workers and their living conditions are very bad and in full mismatch with their life-giving contribution to the society.

The austerity measures that were implemented in the name of the economic crisis take a permanent character in all the countries of Europe and western world, in the form of pension and salary cuts and workers’ rights withdrawal. The rivalries between strong monopolies of different countries are increasing and trigger imperialist interventions, as the recent one in Syria, financial wars and sanctions that have direct consequences in the life of ordinary people of those countries. The wars that took place in countries like Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria aim at the exploitation of these countries’ natural resources by the strong capitalist countries; it’s them who shed peoples’ blood and create entire “armies” of uprooted people, refugees and immigrants.

In the African countries, in many countries of Asia and Latin America, the workers are suffering the lack of dignified work. There is no health and safety measures in their workplaces, there is no health coverage, drinking water, sufficient food, prevention for diseases like AIDS etc. The unemployment and insecurity especially in youth and women deny their right to life with dignity.

In this framework, the World Federation of Trade Unions supports the struggles and the initiatives of the workers who resist in France, India and shows its solidarity with the sugarcane workers in Latin America, the teachers, everyone who is struggling in every corner of the planet. We stand on the side of the people of Venezuela, of Cuba, on the side of peoples who fight against imperialists.

During the 73 years from its establishment, the WFTU dedicates its action to the defense of the workers rights, the strengthening of the class-oriented trade union movement at global level and to the practical expression of the internationalist solidarity. The observance of the International Conventions of the ILO is important for ensuring the fundamental rights and trade union freedoms of the workers, but what is also needed is constant vigilance and class struggles, against monopolies and their devastating policies for the workers.

We call upon the persons responsible in ILO to take into account the long-standing WFTU demand for more democratic and transparent operation of their institutions.

The WFTU will firmly continue it’s upward militant course, the organization of international activities for the present and future of the workers, for stable work, without imperialist wars, without xenophobic and neo-racist phenomena.

We give our hand to every worker, regardless of his/her color, religion, sex, language to stand with us, united in struggle against the imperialist barbarity.