The International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine, and General Workers' Unions condemns the use of force against striking Exopetrol workers in Colombia: Expressing support to Colombian trade union Unión Sindical Obrera de la Industria Del Petróleo (USO), ICEM General Secretary Fred Higgs stated in a letter to President Alvaro Uribe that Colombia's use of "armed military personnel in and around Ecopetrol's petroleum facilities has escalated the conflict," making it even more difficult to resolve. To date, some 100 USO members and leaders have been fired for participating in the strike. There are reports of arrests death threats and other forms of harassment against USO trade unionists and supporters. In criticizing the government for creating a climate of hostility toward the union and its members, the world's predominant oil and energy trade union federation again called on President Uribe to change course and "find common ground with USO in order that a fair and equitable resolution to this dispute is found." Write to Uribe here.


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