Unable to get their wages and severance pay since 2019, a group of AtlasGlobal airline workers had been protesting in front of the ETSTur company’s headquarters in İstanbul for six days. Nine people were taken into custody yesterday. * Photo: A.Z.A.P Click to read the article in Turkish
Protesting for their unpaid wages and severance, the workers of AtlasGlobal airline were detained in İstanbul yesterday (December 10).
As they had been unable to get their wages and severance payments for 14 months, a group of workers set up a resistance tent in front of the ETSTur company’s headquarters in İstanbul six days ago. Protesting since then in front of the company owned by Turkey’s Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, they were detained by the police.
Police officers intervened in the protest on the grounds that “they were disturbing public order” and took nine people into custody.
After AtlasGlobal airline, owned by Minister Ersoy’s brother Ali Murat Ersoy, went bankrupt, the workers not given their wages, severance payments and payments in lieu of notice started protesting in front of the ETSTur, owned by Minister of Culture and Tourism Ersoy, on December 4.
They were detained
According to the statement made on the Twitter account of Justice for Atlas Victims Platform (A.Z.A.P), the following people were detained:
Airline Workers Union (Hava-Sen) Chair Seçkin Koçak, AtlasGlobal protesters Ruken Çapan, Tamer Ercan and Çiğdem Ayata, Hope Union’s Ercan Yenigül, Neslihan Acar, Enerji-İş Union Chair Mahmut Altunsoy, artis Ludingirra Özdemir and Ufuk Çeri from Medyascope TV.
‘A fiction fabricated upon Ersoy’s instruction’
According to the platform, the reasons for the detention were as follows:
“We were taken into custody in front of the enterprise of Mehmet Nuri Ersoy on the sixth day of our resistance because we wanted our money not paid for 14 months. Let us share the charges pressed against us:
“Deprivation of liberty. We did not harm anyone during our resistance in front of the ETS; however, the ones deprived of their liberty are our nine friends who have to wait till morning to give their statements to the prosecutor.
“Disturbing personal calm and peace. Yes, this is true. ‘If there is no peace for us, then there is no peace for bosses, either,’ we said and started resisting at the door of Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, who has been disregarding us for the sake of his brother’s interests for 14 months. If you want peace, then give us our money, Ali Murat Ersoy.
“Threatening workplace safety. If there is someone who was threatened in front of the ETSTur building, it must be us. By the police… We had not come face to face with the ones in the workplace even for once.
“All these charges are lies, they are a fiction fabricated upon the instruction of Mehmet Nuri Ersoy.”
AtlasGlobal applied for bankruptcy in February
AtlasGlobal airline announced on November 26, 2019 that they suspended its flights for economic reasons until December 21, 2019.
In a statement released by the company, one of the reasons for this decision was indicated as “the huge increase in logistical and operational costs brought about by the transfer to the İstanbul Airport.”
While the flights of the company started again on December 21, 2019 as scheduled, it applied for bankruptcy on February 13, 2020. (EKN/SD)