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Italian dockworkers refuse to load Israel-bound ship

Italian port workers briefly declined to load an Israel-bound ship with goods, citing the fighting in Gaza, prompting a countermeasure in Israel until shipping was resumed.

The USB dockworkers’ union said Monday that it would not load defense-related equipment onto an ship destined for Israel in the port of Livorno, about 140 miles north of Rome, because the organization “will not be a part of the massacre perpetrated against the Palestinian People,” a spokesperson for USB said, according to Calcalist.

The Histadrut, Israel’s largest trade union, ordered Ashdod and Haifa port workers to decline service to all Italy-bound ships in response, according to the report Tuesday.

Italy’s embassy in Israel intervened and USB ended its boycott action, leading the Histadrut to reciprocate.

In 2018, Italy exported approximately $4 billion worth of goods to Israel — about 0.6% of Italy total exports. Israel that year exported only $900 million worth of goods to Italy.

Source: Arutz Sheva


In solidarity with the Palestinian people, dockworkers in the Italian port of Livorno refused to load weapons on a cargo ship after discovering that they were headed for Israel.

“We’ve decided to say enough,” Giovanni Ceraolo, coordinator of the Unione Sindacale di Base (USB), an independent trade union organization representing workers in the main commercial port of Tuscany in northern Italy,metioned that.

“Whenever we know about loading, unloading or passage of armaments in our port, we’ll intervene. We’ll ask the competent authorities to stop the passage of those weapons, especially if they’re bound for places where they’ll certainly be used against civilians, as is happening now in Palestine,” he added. “If those weapons still come, we’ll do whatever we can to refuse loading or unloading them.”

The trade unionist said if necessary, his organization will declare a strike “so that no weapons in transit in the port of Livorno will be used to kill civilians, wherever this happens.”

He added: “It could be costly for us as we’d lose part of our salary, but no salary justifies aiding in any way those who kill civilians.”

USB member Massimo Mazza told Arab News: “We refused to load that ship because we don’t want to operate on ships carrying death. We don’t want to be called accomplices in giving weapons to those who are killing unarmed civilians, as Israel is doing now.”

He added: “We have no intention to facilitate the transportation of weapons and explosives that will be used to kill the Palestinian people, who are suffering so much and mourn hundreds of innocent civilian victims, including many children.”

The USB in Livorno has launched an awareness campaign so that workers do not load weapons on ships bound for war zones.

“Work is important, especially in the very difficult times we’ve been living through with the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic crisis. But this can’t make us close our eyes, or even worse, become accomplices in the continuing massacres of the civilian population in Palestine,” Ceraolo said.

Source: TNP