Turkish workers feel the pressure of upcoming referendum

The referendum to decide whether to grant the President of Turkey extra powers is still four weeks away, but the government is increasing the pressure on any opposition, including labour activists. The chairperson of Turkish Bureau Union, Fahrettin Yokuş, recently survived an assassination attempt from armed gunmen. A mob attacked the headquarters of the Turkish Public Workers’ Labour Union, while İrfan Değirmenci, a presenter on television station Kanal D was summarily dismissed. Their crime was to have expressed their preference for a No Vote in the upcoming referendum. Also, in a long running issue, 14 leaders of the Ankara branch of the TÜMTİS union, have been sentenced to prison for daring to organise a union at their workplace.