Italy: worker killed at Novara – only a general strike can stop murder and repression!

An activist of the national Italian logistics union has been killed in Novara, after a truck was deliberately rammed into a picket line. Comrades organised in the CGIL have written the following statement (original here) demanding action in the face of this outrageous act of murder. 

Adil Belakadim, worker and trade union activist of Si Cobas, was hit and killed by a truck driver who tried to break through a picket line of unionists in Novara, participating in a national logistical workers’ strike. This was not an accident, but a murder and deliberate attack the workers’ struggle.

It has been evident for some time that the bosses have decided to take a hard line on this confrontation.

As recent events in Tavazzano (where a picket of Si Cobas-organised FedEx workers were attacked by a gang of strikebreakers and the bosses’ goons), and this latest brutal act demonstrate, when a struggle exceeds the limits that the bosses are willing to tolerate, they trigger violence against the workers. Whether it be in the form of these vicious attacks, or the deployment of police in riot gear.

This is true not only of struggles by workers in logistics, but in every sector, regardless of the union at the head.

Although it must be said that maximum exploitation prevails in logistics, including arbitrary schedules and workloads, missed paychecks, precarious employment and illegal work.

The system of procurement and subcontracting permits the multinationals to extract hefty profits, while resulting in deplorable conditions for workers. This system of maximising profit to the exclusion of the well-being of the working class can never be changed, only overthrown.

The message is clear: even after the pandemic, workers must continue to pay for the crisis. You don't just die in front of gates, but also on construction sites and workshops. In 2021, deaths at work increased by 9 percent. 

Enough is enough!

As members of the CGIL, we expect our organisation to give a firm and immediate response.

Sectarian divisions between unions, at this moment, cannot and must not be an obstacle to mobilization. In the face of this murder, there must be no ambiguity and we cannot limit ourselves to empty phrases. 

The calling of meetings in workplaces and of a general strike can no longer be postponed. The workers must know, the union does not stand by idly – it must mobilise to protect them!