Communiqué from the International Committee Against Repression (Cicr)
Distributed by the ILC International Newsletter, New Series N° 197 (566) – October 24th 2014:
A Cicr delegation was received, on its demand, for three hours the 13th of October 2014 by three advisers -- Mrs Sophie Onado, Mr. Marce-Pierre Mancel and Mr. Olivier Nicolas -- members of the cabinet of the French Overseas Minister Mrs. George Pau-Langevin. The Cicr delegation was made up by Mr. Jean Jacques Marie, historian; Mr. Gerard Bauvert, journalist; Dr. François Paraire, honorary hospital Doctor; Mrs Helene Rubinstein-Carrera, honorary barrister at the Paris bar; and by trade unionists Mr. Jacques Girod, General Joint Secretary of the CGT Force Ouvriere Paris department Union, and Mr. Samy Hayon from the CGT.
The objective of this delegation was recalled by the different participants: to put a stop to anti-trade union repression in Guadeloupe; to put a stop to court proceedings that continue to increase against trade unionists in Guadeloupe and that interfere with their union rights; to demand the release of Charly Lendo, former Joint General Secretary of the General Union of Workers of Guadeloupe (UGTG), who is summoned to appear in the Point-a-Pitre court the 20th of January 2015.
All this is occurring while the social situation in Guadeloupe is seriously deteriorating, the Bino (1) Agreements are hardly implemented, and the employers are systematically refusing to open up negotiations.
The Minister's advisers, after recalling their jurisdiction concerning the problems brought up by the delegation, which according to them were matters for the Minister of Justice, insisted on the importance of “territorial declination and implementation of the Responsibility Pact”.
The delegation reaffirmed that whatever appreciation one might have of government policy, for the Cicr and the trade union activists present, “no lessening of tensions in Guadeloupe are likely as long as systematic repression of trade unionists continues”.
As for the advisers, after registering the demands formulated by the delegation, they committed themselves to getting their Ministry to write a memo expounding the circumstances to the Ministry of Justice. The delegation then, re-asserted that it would pursue its campaign in France and at international level against anti-trade union repression and especially to demand the release of Charly Lendo.
[signed] The Cicr delegation and the trade unionists
Note: (1) Agreements ratified by the government, signed between the employers' organisations and the trade unions of Guadeloupe in March 2009, at the end of the forty-four day general strike. Agreements called after the name of the trade unionist Jacques Bino, who was assassinated in Guadeloupe during the general strike.