By Ruth Cashman (Unison activist and participant in the March labour movement conference in Iraqi Kurdistan)
The Iraqi Teachers’ Union is facing a vicious attack from the Iraqi Government. The Iraqi government has demanded that the leadership of the union hand over the keys to its headquarters, along with membership and other records, to a state body.
The government has demanded the union holds a national election and that the current leadership are not allowed to stand for re-election. It is worth noting that the ITU has already held two national conferences since 2003, with a third emergency conference in late 2007 to elect a new president, Jasim Al-lami. The ITU leadership has refused to hand over the union and is ready to struggle to preserve its independence. The leadership have said they will hand over the union only to a newly elected leadership at in open national conference organized by the ITU. The ITU leadership, because of its firm, principled position, is under the threat of prison sentence.
What you can do:
1. Show your solidarity by sending messages of support here via
2. Put a motion to your union branch or students union (for a model motion see the Facebook group "Solidarity with Iraqi workers! Defend the Iraqi teachers' union!" or get in touch).
3. If you would like a speaker, get in touch.
• Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 207 0706.