Federation of Trade Unions of Donetsk People’s Republic

Slavery in the “DNR” and “LNR”

Inaugural Congress of the Federation of Trade Unions of the Donetsk People's Republic, 21 February 2015

Inaugural Congress of the Federation of Trade Unions of the Donetsk People’s Republic, 21 February 2015

The report below appeared under the title above on the Facebook page of the Ukrainian association Liva Opozytsiya – Left Opposition https://www.facebook.com/liva.opozicya (accessed 24 February 2015). Tranlation by Marko Bojcun

The Federation of Trade Unions of the “DNR” (Donetsk People’s Republic) http://www.osps.dn.ua/ was formed this weekend amidst all the pomp and circumstance reminiscent of the era of stagnation (the Brezhnev years – MB). Of course, at the core of this rotten formation are the bureaucrats of the Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine (FPU). Loyal to the Ukrainian oligarchs the FPU has agreed to be their instrument of control over the workers in the territories seized by the separatists. So now we can stop thinking about the development of an independent trade union movement in these “people’s” republics. The Independent Miners Union at the Barakov mine has already come up against the force of the Instruction “about the prohibition of registration of independent unions” (http://npg.social/title/275/).

The draft Law of the “DNR” entitled “On trade unions, their rights and guaranteed activities” contains obstacles in the way of independent trade unions: it is forbidden to form a trade union if it has less than 50 members. Apart from that, there is no recognition that a trade union becomes one from the moment its statutes are adopted.

Freedom of expression is restricted: according to the “DNR” law any mass media outlet can have its license withdrawn for mentioning a “prohibited” organisation. One needs to get state registration in order to distribute a newspaper with a print run of more than 100 (one hundred) copies.

“There are no independent trade unions in the LNR (Luhansk People’s Republic) nor will there be” confirms Mykola Koziuberda, head of the Independent Miners Union at the Nikanor Nova mine (Luhansk Coal Association). Koziuberda has fled his home because of threats against him (see interview with Koziuberda published in this blog – MB)

Protests in the “DNR” are criminalised: its criminal code punishes slander and insult of government officials.

There is a “Labour Code” being prepared in the DNR which has a clearly pro-capitalist character (http://lug-rescomroo.info/?p=277). Under its demagogy about “a republic without oligarchs” a criminal regime is being formed which not only violates the right to work, but excludes the very possibility of struggle for the rights of labour.