On 3 December, the Shymkent court of Kazakhstan rejected the appeal of Erlan Baltabay, a former chairperson of Energy and Oil Workers Union "Decent Work" who was sentenced in June 2019 to seven years in jail on politically motivated charges never proven in court.

On December 16 in Brussels (Belgium) the General Assembly of the Pan-European Regional Council of the International Trade Union Confederation (PERC ITUC) was held. Boris Kravchenko and Igor Kovalchuk as representatives of KTR, as well as Yury Varlamov as a representative of the Youth Committee of PERC participated in the session. 

On November 28—29 the sixth Youth Conference of the Pan-European Regional Council (PERC) of the ITUC was held in Prague (Czech Republic). The conference was participated by young trade union activists representing trade unions of Azerbaijan, Albania, Armenia, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Moldova, Northern Macedonia, Russia, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine.

Today inspectors of the Far-Eastern regional organization of the Seafarers Union of Russia boarded the m / v «Winner» moored in the commercial sea port of Nakhodka. As it turned out during the inspection there is no ITF collective agreement on board although this is the only document that can protect seafarers on a board of the vessel under the flag of convenience.

The crew of the m / v “Global Harmony” (Liberia flag, IMO 9473573, year of construction 2010) consisting mainly of the Philippino seafarers expressed a wish to work under the ITF collective agreement. They asked the inspectors of the Seafarers Union of Russia who visited the ship in the port of Nakhodkato provide assistance in that matter.

Some of the drivers, hospital attendants, and paramedics of the ambulance station in Petrozavodsk will stop going on calls in understaffed teams. They planned a work-to-rule because of low wages and lack of health workers at the stations. The emergency hospital administration responded with a «letter from colleagues condemning the rioters.» On August 28, this information was confirmed to «7x7» by the Chairman of the primary organization of trade Union Deystvie (Action) of the emergency hospital in Karelia Olga Chayka.

The Ch. Engineer and the 2nd Engineer from the vessel Magellan (flag of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines IMO 9087104) announced a protest in connection with non-payment of wages within more than 6 months. The seafarers refuse to let representatives of repair team sent by the shipowners to the engine room. The information was presented by the chairman of the Azov-Don Territorial Organization of the Seafarers Union of Russia (SUR) Leonid Glushak. Two seafarers who are members’of the SUR have not received a salary since February and for the moment the debt to them comes to about 25 thousand dollars.

The President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kassym Tokayev issued a decree on the evening of August 9th pardoning trade union leader Erlan Baltabay, leader of the Fuel and Energy Workers' Union and vice-president of the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Kazakhstan (KNPRK), from custody. Baltabay was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment on July 17, 2019, on embezzlement charges that the international labor movement condemned as being politically motivated. His sentence also included a prohibition on trade union activities for an additional seven years after his jail term.

Russian trade unions of food workers—Novoprof (affiliated with the KTR) and AIWU—have taken a significant step towards raising health and safety standards at Danone facilities throughout Russia in a newly-signed agreement.

The ITUC has harshly condemned the sentencing of Kazakhstan trade union leader Erlan Baltabay. Efforts to improve freedom of association for working people are once again jeopardised; but the country’s new leadership could still intervene.

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