BWI supports Belarus workers’ strike against election fraud

(Photo: Bangkok Post)

BWI, on behalf of its 12 million trade union members worldwide, expresses its full solidarity and support to Belarus’ brave trade unionists and workers who went on strike and launched massive peaceful actions to protest the alleged massive electoral fraud in their country. We stand with the country’s workers who’ve selflessly joined work stoppages nationwide and close ranks with Belarus’ growing democracy movement to oppose Mr. Alexander Lukashenko’s 26-year rule. Their courage, unity and strength inspire the global trade union movement.

In the same vein, BWI condemns in the strongest possible terms the violence and repression unleashed by the state against the working people of Belarus. We denounce the police brutality inflicted against workers who were peacefully exercising their democratic rights and justly questioning the results of their election. BWI demands that Mr. Lukashenko to order his security forces to stand down and for him to fully recognise human and trade union rights, including the freedom of association, free speech and peaceful assembly.

BWI calls on the European and international community to come up with stronger measures and exhaust all political and diplomatic means available to ensure that the Belarus people’s democratic rights are secured and their true choice is fully reflected in the outcome of their election. As a member of the international community, Belarus, under Mr. Lukashenko, cannot continue to act outside of human rights and democracy without consequences. 

Lastly, BWI encourages fellow trade unionists and workers worldwide to express their full support to the Belarus people. As trade unionists, we all know that peaceful, orderly and genuine elections are one of the hallmarks of democracy. Whether it is in our unions or in society in general, free and fair election is an essential feature of worker democracy. Thus, when the right to vote is sullied, undermined and circumvented in favor of vested interests, it is incumbent upon all workers to rise up and defend it.