Resolution on Trade Union Freedom in Iraq

published 23 July 2004 updated 31 March 2017

The Fourth World Congress of Education International, meeting in Porto Alegre (Brazil) from 22 to 26 July 2004:

1. Considering that, in conformity with ILO Standards, full-fledged freedom of association must exist in the new Iraq, which would guarantee the right of Iraqi workers to organise and to bargain collectively; there must be genuine democracy with full civil liberties, allowing trade unions to choose their own leaders in full independence and free from any pressure; the Iraqi people must have the right to full-fledged self-determination;

2. Noting that today education personnel as well as all workers in Iraq do not have the right to organise and to bargain collectively in conformity with ILO Conventions 87 and 98;

3. Asserting, in conformity with these conventions, its unfailing commitment to the right of workers in all sectors to establish, without prior authorisation, the organisations that they see fit, to elect their representatives freely and to develop an action programme, to resort to strike action if necessary, without any intervention from authorities limiting that right, and their opposition to any discrimination aiming at restricting trade union freedom with regard to employment;

4. Considering that the introduction of democracy and civil peace and the full sovereignty of the Iraqi people require the withdrawal of all occupation troops without delay, a demand which has been gathering steam in the trade union movement and public opinion;

The Fourth World Congress of Education International:

5. Asks that all restrictions to trade union freedom in Iraq be lifted immediately, in conformity with ILO Conventions 87 and 98;

6. Recommends to its member organisations that they support this demand;

7. Supports the efforts of Iraqi teachers to build and strengthen their trade unions, so that their right to collective bargaining is recognised and that necessary measures be taken to grant all Iraqi students free and universal access to quality public education.