The Guardian May 3, 2000


MAY DAY 2000 message from WFTU

On the occasion of May Day 2000, the first May Day in the new century 
and the new millennium, the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) called 
on workers around the world to unite and fight against the unjust social 
system.

"For over a century, the working people and trade unions the world over 
have reiterated their faith in unity, united action and solidarity every 
time they assembled together to celebrate May Day and reaffirm their 
resolve to defend the rights of working people, said the WFTU in a special 
May Day message expressing international solidarity.

"The common cause of the working people the world over and their struggle 
for a better life and social justice have spearheaded the fight against all 
forms of oppression and exploitation, as well as against wars, imperialism, 
colonialism and neocolonialism.

The WFTU expressed its complete solidarity with the struggles and campaigns 
which the national trade union movements are organising against the attacks 
on trade union rights, against privatisation and the liquidation of the 
state sector and public services, against unemployment, poverty and hunger, 
for the rights of working women, for the elimination of child labour and 
for the implementation of international labour standards.

"The global monopolies and the governments acting on their behalf, putting 
on the garb of neoliberal `globalisation', want to reverse all the social 
gains achieved by the working class movement, especially in the field of 
job security, a living wage and trade union rights, said the May Day 
message.

"The massive protest demonstrations before the WTO meeting in Seattle and 
the IMF meeting in Washington and worldwide solidarity actions by the 
working people and trade unions in all countries, in the recent period, 
demonstrate the widespread opposition to the anti-social policies which are 
imposed on countries and which lead to an increase in unemployment and 
underemployment, growing poverty and destitution.

The WFTU strongly condemned the policy of double standards that is applied 
by the dominant economic groups and countries, such as the active support 
given by the United States to Israel and its policy of occupation of Arab 
lands, in defiance of UN resolutions.

It demanded an immediate end to Israeli occupation as well as an end to all 
blockades and sanctions imposed by the imperialist powers against Cuba, 
Libya, Iraq, Sudan, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, China, India, 
Pakistan, Iran, Yugoslavia and Serbia.

"The situation demands more active efforts to promote unity and united 
action in the world trade union movement ...

"The WFTU calls upon trade unions in all countries to act vigorously to 
urge all governments to ensure that real progress is achieved at the UN 
meetings convened this year to review implementation of the programs of 
action adopted at the World Summit for Social Development (Copenhagen, 
1995) and other UN summits on global issues held in the 1990s.

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