Witch hunt against Mahalla strike leaders begins

The crackdown on Mahalla labor activists is taking a dangerous twist… and this is just the beginning…

Ghazl el-Mahalla activist Mohamed el-Attar, who was among the leaders of the 27,000-strong December strike, has been issued a “transfer order” yesterday, and will be re-assigned to the company’s offices in Alexandria. Attar was instructed to move to Alexandria in a period no later than 16 May, or else he’ll be sacked. A number of labor activists have been also internally re-assigned to other jobs in Mahalla.

I spoke with Attar, and he said he was told today by his boss Engineer Mohamed Awad that the “order came from up high. It’s above me, and above Mahmoud el-Gebally (the company CEO). State Security does not want you here.”

For more background information on Mohamed el-Attar and the struggle of the textile workers, click on the photo below…

Photo by Hossam el-Hamalawy

[Above: Ghazl el-Mahalla December strike leaders (L) Mohamed el-Attar and (R) Sayyed Habib at the Center for Trade Union and Workers’ Services in Mahalla. The office was shut down 10 April by the government. Photo by Hossam el-Hamalawy, taken on 9 March 2007.]

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