Tahar Berberi, general secretary FGME-UGTT, Fernando Lopes, assistant general secretary IndustriALL, Houcine Abassi, general secretary UGTT, and Jyrki Raina, general secretary IndustriALL, March 2013.
Trade unions make a difference! The 2015 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to a quartet of Tunisian civil society groups for their promotion of democracy in the country following the Arab Spring. National trade union centre, Union Générale Tunisienne du Travail (UGTT) is one of the winners.
Four Tunisian organizations, the UGTT, the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts, the Tunisian Human Rights League, and the Tunisian Order of Lawyers, are to receive the Nobel Peace Prize 2015 for their achievement of an "alternative peaceful political process in 2013 when the country was on the brink of civil war and subsequently guaranteed fundamental rights for the entire population", according to the Nobel Peace Prize committee.
Tahar Berberi, general secretary of Fédération Générale de la Métallurgie et de l’Electronique affiliated to the UGTT, and a member of the IndustriALL Executive Committee, says:
We are very moved and extremely proud of the award. It recognizes the hard and difficult work done so far, and gives hope to continue building on that. We thank all who supported us and especially trade unions like IndustriALL.
I hope that the Nobel Peace Prize brings together all political and social sides to work together on the noble task of creating a democratic society.
IndustriALL Global Union general secretary Jyrki Raina says:
We congratulate our Tunisian brothers and sisters on what they have achieved for their country. This fantastic news shows that trade unions are an important part of building a democratic and peaceful society.
In December 2014, IndustriALL held its Executive Committee in Tunis as a show of support for country’s democratic development, in which trade unions have played an important part.
Invited as a key speaker, Houcine Abassi, General Secretary of UGTT, promised to protect gains made by workers and said that:
“Workers are instrumental in the strive for a democratic Tunisia. IndustriALL’s presence in our country sends a strong message of support for our trade unions and their work.”