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ICFTU OnLine: Burmese junta faces u

ICFTU OnLine: Burmese junta faces ultimatum
 > ICFTU OnLine...
 > 130/000614/LD
 > Forced labour: Burmese junta faces ultimatum
 > ICFTU welcome's ILO determination
 > Brussels, June 15 2000 (ICFTU OnLine): The International Confederation of
 > Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) welcomes the firmness shown by the International
 > Labour Organisation (ILO) in demanding that the Burmese junta comply with
 > its recommendation to put an end to forced labour, failing which the
 > country > will be ostracised by the international community.
 > In a resolution strongly supported by the workers' delegates, and adopted
 > yesterday by the International Labour Conference currently meeting in
 > Geneva, the ILO has given Rangoon until November 30 to take concrete
 > measures and bring its legislation and practices into line with the
 > Conventions banning forced labour. The resolution was adopted by 257
 > votes to 41 with 31 abstentions. The International Labour Conference is the
 > annual assembly of the ILO, the only tripartite agency in the UN system.
 > The governments, trade unions and employers of its 175 member states are
 > represented on an equal footing.
 > According to the ICFTU which initiated the ILO's action, over 800,000
 > Burmese are subject to forced labour daily while any attempt to carry out
 > trade union activity in the country is savagely repressed, forcing the
 > activists of the Burmese trade union federation (FTUB) to operate
 > underground.
 > Among the range of measures foreseen by the ILO is a recommendation to
 > governments and employers' and workers' organisations to review their
 > relations with Burma to ensure that they cannot in any way be used to
 > perpetuate the system of forced labour. The same appeal is addressed to
 > international bodies, urging them to cease any activity which may have the
 > effect of tolerating or encouraging forced labour. The ILO is also asking
 > that the situation in Burma be placed on the agenda of the forthcoming
 > session of the United Nations Economic and Social Committee in 2001. It
 > is the first time in the history of the ILO that it has invoked article 
33 of
 > its constitution providing for such measures.
 > "We would of course feel much happier if forced labour were eradicated in
 > Burma. But the determination of the ILO, and therefore of the
 > international  community, in this affair, which affects thousands of 
lives, is
 > encouraging. It enables us to continue the fight and above all will 
those waging this battle, at the risk of their lives, within the country,"
 > stated  Bill Jordan, ICFTU General Secretary, in Brussels yesterday.
 > The ICFTU represents 124 million workers in 216 national trade union
 > centres from 145 countries around the world.
 > Contact: ICFTU-Press at: ++32-2 224.02.12 (Brussels). For more
 > information, > visit our website at: (http://www.icftu.org).