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The NASUWT has been providing assistance to teachers union’ Egitim Sen as senior members of the union have had to flee repression in Turkey.

Thousands of members of Egitim Sen continue to be made unemployed or imprisoned as the regime of President Erdogan attempts to dismantle the trade union and civil and political rights movement in the country.

Repressive tactics include arbitrary detention, mass sackings of public servants and physical abuse of detainees in custody.

Many senior members of Egitim Sen have fled Turkey and are now living in Germany as refugees and are being supported by the German teachers’ union GEW.

Senior members of the Turkish public sector trade union confederation KESK have also had to leave the country.

With assistance from the NASUWT, Education International (EI) has been providing financial assistance to support the education unions in Turkey, including Education International.

The deteriorating situation was raised by the NASUWT during an emergency debate at the TUC Congress in September 2017.

NASUWT Ex-President Kathy Wallis said: “Teachers are being denied the right to organise freely in independent and democratic trade unions, free from political interference. There have been  unacceptable and unjustified attacks against our sisters and brothers in Egitim Sen.

“The NASUWT is outraged by these attacks on teachers and those who have devoted their lives to civil rights, democracy and building a just and fair society.

“We are outraged by actions that have led to many thousands of teachers being summarily dismissed, suspended or arbitrarily arrested and ordered to appear before court hearings falsely accused as terrorists and of actions against the state, thus losing their right to work and their livelihoods.”

Despite these continued attacks, Egitim Sen has remained steadfast and determined to continue to work to secure trade union rights and freedoms, Ms Wallis said.

She added: “The NASUWT is demanding that the Turkish Government cease their repressive actions against teachers and guarantee quality education for all.

The Unions is pressing the UK Government to take action.

Ms Wallis said: “Ignoring human rights abuses in Turkey and allying our government with the repressive Turkish Government purely because we need post Brexit allies is not and cannot ever be the basis for the future of our economy.”


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