Murder of striking rail worker in Argentina

The Regional Council agreed to send a letter of support to Argentinian trade unionists protesting against this murder.

On October 20 a young railway worker, Mariano Ferreyra, who was only 23 years old, was killed during a blockade as a part of a campaign for the reinstatement of sacked workers of one of the railway lines in Buenos Aires. Mariano was a sacked railway worker of the Roca Line, a university student and also a political activist of a left wing party in Argentina.

The struggle and campaign for the reinstatement on permanent contract of the sacked workers has been going on for 8 months. The workers have been sacked and rehired on less pay and worse working conditions. Nearly 1,500 workers are in this situation and during their campaign for reinstatement have been intimidated by the trade union leadership on several occasions, but the killing of Mariano is the most brutal expression of this harassment. The leadership of the Union Ferroviaria supported the privatisation of the railway network and has always sought to get rid of the activists that are in opposition to them. Its general secretary runs a company that supplies track components to the Roca Line.

Mariano Ferreyra took part in the picket called last Wednesday during which the workers were attacked by a group of armed thugs sent by the right wing trade union leadership. Mariano died of gunshot wounds and a supporter, a 62-year-old woman, was seriously injured and is in a serious condition in hospital.

Within hours of the killing there was a demonstration to condemn this crime in the centre of Buenos Aires city supported by trade unionists, students, human rights organisations and left-wing political groups. On Thursday, October 21, there was a second demonstration attended by almost 30,000 people.

I wonder if you are willing to send a message of solidarity and distribute it among RMT members. I am more than happy to add a petition text to read along this letter for people to send their concern about this tragic event.

Thank you very much in advance, Alejandra Ríos