Mauritius should support Palestinian call for UN apartheid investigation, say country's trade union federations
Largest trade union federations in Mauritius call on Prime Minister Jugnauth to heed the Palestinian Trade Unions call for reconstitution of UN anti-apartheid mechanisms
Responding to the call by Palestinian trade unions and professional associations for meaningful actions in support of the rights of Palestinian workers and of the Palestinian people as a whole, the three largest trade union federations in Mauritius -- Mauritius Labour Congress, Confederation des Travailleurs des Secteurs Publique et Privé and Federation of Parastatal Bodies and Other Union -- have called on their government to support all efforts at the UN to investigate and monitor the Israeli imposition of apartheid, and to support the reconstitution of the UN Special Committee against Apartheid as well as the UN Centre against Apartheid.
Together, these federations represent tens of thousands of Mauritian workers from various sectors.
The original letter and details of the federations are shared below:
To: The Prime Minister of Mauritius, Hon. Pravind Jugnauth,
15 June, 2023
We write to you, as Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius, to request that your Government adds the support of the state of Mauritius to efforts at the United Nations to investigate the state of Israel’s imposition of Apartheid.
We, as union federations and confederations, are calling on you in response to a formal request made to us by Palestinian trade unions and professional associations. They have asked us to find and accomplish “meaningful actions” in support of the rights of Palestinian workers and of the Palestinian people as a whole, and to end the system of occupation, colonization and apartheid that is being imposed by the Israeli state apparatus on them.
This open letter is such an action, and we hope, by this means, to encourage the elected Mauritian government to give public support at the UN to all moves in favour of exposing the “Apartheid” nature of the Israeli state.
Israel continued colonization and military occupation of Palestinian land means the continued expulsion of Palestinian families, including children and the aged, from their homes. All this violence is perpetrated in order to give way for illegal Israeli settlements to be built, in turn, on this land. As you are aware, let us be precise, Israeli settlements are considered “war crimes” under international law. Also, Israel’s systematic destruction of the Palestinian economy, its discriminatory and racist laws being applied, and its restrictions on freedom of movement and association, are considered by international human rights organizations, as well as by numerous United Nations’ experts, to be manifestations of “Apartheid”. Apartheid. as you know, has also been declared, since 1966, to be a crime against humanity.
The United Nations had qualified the year 2022 to have been the “deadliest year” for Palestinians since the year 2006 – in terms of Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. This is due to the increased use of force by both the Israeli military and the more frequently recurrent physical attacks against Palestinians by Israeli settlers, both kinds of violence being perpetrated with impunity. The new extreme-right Israeli regime is actually openly encouraging the military’s and the settlers’ attacks in the occupied territories.
Through this letter, we, as trade union federations, add our voice in the Republic of Mauritius to that of other unions all over the world to their respective governments, by calling on you, our elected government, to support all efforts at the UN to investigate the Israeli imposition of apartheid, and to go ahead with the reconstituting of the “UN Special Committee against Apartheid” and the “UN Centre against Apartheid” so as to monitor continued apartheid.
Haniff Peerun, for Mauritius Labour Congress (member of SOMALP*)
Reeaz Chuttoo, for Confederation des Travailleurs des Secteurs Publique et Privé (member of SOMALP)
Deepak Benydin, for Federation of Parastatal Bodies and Other Union (member of SOMALP)
* SOMALP (Mauritian Solidarity with the People of Palestine: No to Israeli Apartheid!)
CC Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Alan Ganoo.
Details of the three federations:
1. The Mauritius Labour Congress (MLC) is a coalition of 6 federations consisting of 60 trade unions. It has approximately 20,000 members. Its unions are involved in economic sectors like the port, agriculture (public and private), education, banking, health (nurses), electricity, telecommunication.
2. The Confederation des Travailleurs des Secteurs Publique et Privé (CTSPP) is a coalition of 3 federations in the service, chemical products and construction sectors. It has around 15,000 members.
3. The Federation of Parastatal Bodies and Other Unions (FPBOU) is a coalition of 35 trade unions with 6,000 members in total. Its unions are in the para public, education, health, agriculture and airport sectors.