30 May 2019: TARIM ORMAN-IS, Civil Servants Union of Agriculture, Forestry, Husbandry and Environment in Turkey, recently released a public statement on how the General Directorate of Forestry have refused to book rooms for forest rangers at the Directorate’s guest house. In response, the Directorate has started a prosecution against Sukru Durmus, President of TARIM ORMAN-IS due to the union’s criticism of the Directorate.
The union protested the attitude of the Directorate which refused to provide a room for a forest ranger who has to stay in Ankara to receive a cancer treatment. According to the Directorate they were unable to provide a room as they had been reserved to accommodate Member of Parliaments (MPs) under the instruction of the Minister. The union stressed that the Directorate guest house should prioritise accommodating its own workers and protested the current implementation.
Based on the union’s statement, Sukru Durmus was informed that the General Directorate of Forestry has started a prosecution against him since his public statements draw the wrath of the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry.
National newspapers and television channels have covered the recent conflict making it very public. This has resulted in the union releasing another statement stating that they will continue with the assistance of some MPs defend the rights of workers to benefit from the public facilities which have been originally built for their use.
The BWI has expressed its support to President Durmus. Ambet Yuson, General Secretary of BWI stated, “Prosecution of a trade union president who is defending workers’ rights is unacceptable. We call on the General Directorate of Forestry to stop all charges of prosecution against Sukru Durmus. Instead of wasting energy to prosecute President Durmus, the Directorate should utilize its energy and resources to provide necessary conditions for its workers to benefit from public facilities.”