Credit: Freepik

Czech Trade Unions Cancel Protest Following Attack On Slovak PM Fico

The Bohemian-Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions (CMKOS) has cancelled a demonstration planned for 21 May against the government’s plans to amend the Labor Code and pension system, in order to calm the situation following Wednesday’s assassination attempt on Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico.

At the same time, the trade unionists called on Prime Minister Petr Fiala (ODS) to discuss the issues to be addressed at the protest. Fiala welcomed the trade unions’ move, and said he believed it would mean a return to the negotiating table.

CMKOS said they cancelled the demonstration after consultations with their Slovak colleagues. They stressed they had always preferred consensus-building and social dialogue. “That is why we are asking the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic for a meeting with the presidents and chairwomen of the CMKOS trade unions, so that we can discuss the topics that were to be the subject of the demonstration and at the same time show society that such an approach is not only possible but also more effective than escalating tensions,” CMKOS said yesterday.

The trade unionists wanted to use the demonstration to express their opposition to dismissals without cause and the extension of the retirement age. The reasons for calling the demonstration are still pertinent, according to CMKOS, which is why they hope to sit down for talks with the prime minister as soon as possible.

Fiala welcomed the cancellation of the demonstration on social media. “I appreciate the fact that the unions have cancelled the announced protest and want to contribute to calming society. This is now the right step, and I believe it will also mean a return to the negotiating table,” he said.

Labour and Social Affairs Minister Marian Jurecka (KDU-CSL) also said that he appreciated the unions’ decision, and that he always prefers negotiations.

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