NUM connects with Ukrainian miners

Submitted by AWL on 5 May, 2015 - 5:20 Author: Rhodri Evans

Britain’s National Union of Mineworkers has recently sent two delegations to meet miner trade unionists in Ukraine.

One was to an all-Ukraine miners’ union congress in Kyiv on 21 April, the other to a meeting with West Donbas union leaders on 28 March.

The Ukraine Solidarity Campaign here comments that this sets “an example to our trade union movement in providing real solidarity with our brothers and sisters of the Ukrainian labour movement”.

NUM secretary Chris Kitchen has written to the TUC:

“As the TUC will be reporting on developments in Ukraine I wish to set out the position of the NUM.

“We support the Ukrainian miners and trade unions in their official support for preserving the national integrity of a united Ukraine and for the removal of Russian forces and weapons from Eastern Ukraine as a necessary condition for building a successful peace. We support the Ukrainian miners’ and trade union movement as a movement that unites Ukrainian workers across the whole of Ukraine”.

The April Ukrainian miners’ congress demanded: return state support to the mining sector, fix a reasonable coal price equivalent to the price at which coal is imported.

The Kyiv government’s energy minister addressed the congress, but miners angry about wage arrears heckled him and called on him to resign.