May Day Vigour in Gebze and Mersin: UID-DER Marches Forward, Struggle Grows!

UID-DER was present in Gebze and Mersin with its massive, enthusiastic, disciplined and red columns. The workers in the columns were mainly women and young. UID-DER contingents attracted notice with energetic slogans, red flags, workers’ discipline and placards against the rise of fascism and attacks against workers.


UID-DER workers came to the gathering point chanting the slogan “UID-DER marches forward, struggle grows!” They sang anthems and songs and formed Halay circles. After the program UID-DER activists formed a disciplined contingent carrying banners that read “Forward to organised struggle against the push for presidential system, rise of fascism, and unjust war!”, “We won’t let agency work and elimination of severance payment!”, “Workers of all countries, unite!” With its enthusiasm and discipline UID-DER column once again showed how a workers’ column should be. Men and women, young and old workers, workers’ children and students strongly cried out their demands raising their clenched fists in UID-DER ranks.

On the front line of UID-DER contingent was UID-DER Women’s Committee with its banner “Working Women to the Front Lines of Struggle! Stop violence against women! Lengthen the maternity leave! Ban night shifts! No workplaces without nursery!” Working women who chanted their demands in the front line of the contingent cried out that they will be in the front lines of the struggle as well. They summoned the women to heighten the struggle against double oppression. They chanted “No emancipation for workers unless working women join the struggle!”

Refugee and immigrant workers were also present in UID-DER column. While slogan “Workers of all countries, unite” was chanted Syrian and Iranian workers cried out their demands in UID-DER column. They carried banners that read “Freedom to Iranian workers and political prisoners!”, “Punish the murderers of Shahrokh Zamani!” They demanded peace for the Middle East and the world.

The discipline and May Day enthusiasm of the working class reflected in slogans of UID-DER workers. They chanted the slogans of “We won’t let elimination of severance payment, subcontracting, flexible work, dismissals, and agency work! Long live our organised struggle!”, “Crises, war, unemployment! Solution: workers’ power!”, “Violence, rape, harassment: down with capitalist order of exploitation!”, “Workers die, capital grows! Down with the rule of capital!”, “Stop imperialist war!”, “Workers will bring peace to the Middle East!”

As UID-DER column maintained its discipline during the programme in the square and boosted the enthusiasm of the workers with slogans, songs, Halay circles and anthems it was appreciated by workers around. From factories to squares UID-DER’s combative workers took pride in raising their voices in May Day despite the rise of fascism and police state practises.


Mersin Labour and Democracy Forces, a platform composed of Mersin branches of many national unions, of chambers of physicians and engineers, architects, socialist organisations etc, organised the May Day demonstration in Mersin. Thousands of workers from diverse industries protested the ongoing war, demanded peace and their rights.

Working heartily for the unity and solidarity of the working class UID-DER was present in the rally held in Mersin. UID-DER workers gathered together in Mersin local office of the association in the noon. They held an enthusiastic event here and prepared for the rally singing anthems and songs, reading poems.

UID-DER workers take their place in the marching column on Cumhuriyet Square and marched with slogans against the rise of fascism, unjust and imperialist war. Marching in their unions’ contingents dock workers, glass workers, municipality workers came to UID-DER contingent to share UID-DER workers’ enthusiasm. Many workers wanted to be informed about UID-DER’s work and visit Mersin local office.

Workers and youth thanked UID-DER for organising such an event and march in May Day and declared that they want to join UID-DER’s activities.

13 May 2016