The acting chairman of the Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions (BKDP) Maksim Pazniakou met with the Director General of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Gilbert F. Houngbo. The main topic of the meeting was the fate of dozens of trade union leaders and activists who are in Belarusian prisons.
The meeting took place in the framework of the 15th Congress of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), currently being held in Berlin. One of the central topics of the meeting with the Director General were the issues concerning the imprisoned trade unionists in Belarus.
Maksim Pazniakou thanked Gilbert F. Houngbo for his attempts to influence the fate of Belarusian trade unionists, including his appeal to the Belarusian authorities to invite ILO representatives to visit detained activists in prisons. However, it is worth noting that the Belarusian authorities refused to implement the proposals of the international organization.
During the conversation, they also talked about the upcoming International Labour Conference, which will discuss the application of Article 33 of the ILO Charter against the Belarusian government for the long-standing violation of workers' rights and disregard for the recommendations of the International Labour Organization.
In an effort to influence the position of delegates to the International Labor Conference before the vote, Mikhail Orda, chairman of the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus (FPB), has launched a mass mailing of letters. In these letters, he continues to praise Lukashenka's regime and equates mass arrests of trade union activists with the prevention of a coup d'état.
Meanwhile, the number of political prisoners in Belarus has already exceeded 1500 people. More than 40 trade union activists are in prison, while hundreds, if not thousands, have been dismissed for their trade union work and are having difficulty finding new jobs. Maksim Pazniakou will report on this in his speech on May 25 to the participants of the 15th Congress of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).