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Tragic death underscores the need for peaceful negotiation

18 Jun 2021

Adil Belakhdim was killed this morning (Friday 18 June 2021) by a truck that ran a picket outside a Lidl warehouse in Biandrate, near Milan, Italy.

He leaves behind a wife, Lucia and two children aged four and six. The thoughts of everyone at ITF and ETF are with his family and friends, and with his brothers and sisters at the Si Cobas. Belakhdim, 37, was a union representative for Si Cobas in the Novarese area.

Several others were injured in the incident with at least two being taken to hospital with reportedly minor injuries. An investigation into the circumstances of the death has been started by the Italian authorities.

We join the call from our affiliated unions FILT-CGIL, FIT-CISL and Uiltrasporti for the Italian Government to open dialogue on the state of the logistic sector in Italy, especially on the need to regulate subcontracting.

“Tensions can run high in this kind of dispute,” said ETF General Secretary Livia Spera. “But both Adil and the driver of the truck are victims. They are victims of a corporate system that does not respond to the human needs of workers, and of a government that doesn’t care to intervene.

Noel Coard, ITF Inland Transport Section Secretary responded to today’s tragic events: “I hope we can all learn from Adil’s heartbreaking death that peaceful talks are always the best way forward. This death is tragic because it was so unnecessary.”

Local unions will extend the picket at Biandrate and workers in the Lidl warehouse will strike for 48 hours (19 and 20 June) to show solidarity with Adil Belakhdim and the cause he was fighting for.