NATIONAL LEADERS OF SI COBAS ARRESTED:
A NEW, HIGHLY REPRESSIVE ATTACK
ON UNIONS AND WORKERS’ STRUGGLES
On Tuesday July 19 at dawn, a warrant from the Piacenza prosecutor’s office, has placed SI Cobas national coordinator Aldo Milani and three organisers of the Piacenza-based union — Mohamed Arafat, Carlo Pallavicini, and Bruno Scagnelli under house arrest, together with two organisers of USB, another rank-and-file union.
The charges are of conspiracy to commit private violence, resistance to public official, sabotage and interruption of public service. This accusation allegedly stemmed from strikes conducted in Piacenza’s logistics warehouses from 2014 to 2021.
According to prosecutors, these strikes were carried out with specious motives and with “extortionist” intent, in order to obtain better conditions for workers than those provided by the national contract.
In the dock are all the major struggles and mobilizations conducted in recent years: Gls, Amazon, FedEx-Tnt, etc.
It is clear that we are facing an all-out offensive by the state and bosses against the extraordinary cycle of struggles that have seen tens of thousands of workers throughout Italy rebel against caporalato and brutally exploitative conditions.
This repressive fabrication can be associated to the parliamentary coup d’état enacted a few days ago by the Draghi government at the behest of Assologistica (an association of logistic companies), with the amendment to Article 1677 of the Civil Code aimed at eliminating the joint and several liability of principals for wage theft by cooperatives and other supplier firms.
We are facing a large-scale political attack on the right to strike and above all aimed at effectively outlawing company-level bargaining, thus permanently eliminating unions from the workplace.
As we have argued on several occasions, the advance of the crisis and the winds of war translate into an increasingly stringent offensive against the working class and in particular against its vanguards.
Despite provocation from the police, government, and employers, SI Cobas workers have responded with a strong participation to the strike called by SI Cobas in dozens of warehouses and workplaces.
On Wednesday morning sit-ins are being held at prefectures in several cities, and a national demonstration is planned for Saturday in Piacenza.
Struggles against exploitation cannot be indicted!
The real criminal associations are the bosses and their state!
FREE ALDO, ARAFAT, CARLO AND BRUNO NOW!