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WFTU condemns crackdown on Paraguayan harbor workers

The World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) for the Southern Cone denounces the

severe violations suffered by the workers of the League of Maritime Workers of Paraguay 

(LOMP) twelve of its members were arrested after claiming their labor and trade union 

rights.

On November 12th, the harbor workers organized a blocking on the Paraguay River in 

protest against the private harbors that are disrespecting the workers in the sector.

LOMP informed the private port of Caacupemí - administered by the San Francisco

company SA- fired unjustifiably about 200 longshoremen of which over a hundred were 

rehired, but the others are still waiting for the outcome of tripartite meetings, which are 

being boycotted by representatives of employers, denounces the League.

Moreover, LOMP reclaims the respect of labor laws and trade union rights by 

entrepreneurs of private harbors, because some of them like in Caacupemí are prohibited 

from hiring workers associated with the organization.

Workers also require the reactivation of the Harbor of Asuncion in defense of thousands 

of jobs, the Nautical School reactivation of the National Merchant Marine and reject the 

damage caused to the environment by private companies.

A day after the blocking, members of the Naval Prefecture, went on a patrol boat near the 

small boats and a helicopter flew over the area, causing large waves endangering the lives 

of the protesters, who were in small boats.

To suppress the protest twelve Paraguayans were arrested and may be imprisoned for six 

years under Article 214 of the Paraguayan Penal Code who claims that the actions of the 

union endangered the aquatic environment.

The World Federation of Trade Unions for the Southern Cone vehemently rejects this 

attitude of the Horacio Cartes government that goes against the interests of the 

Paraguayan working class, violatesitsrights and expresses its solidarity with the unionists

of the League of Maritime Workers of Paraguay.

Divanilton Pereira is the Coordinator for WFTU Southern Cone
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