From Fri Aug 17 19:24:17 2001
Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2001 22:39:16 -0500 (CDT)
From: Open World Conference <>
Subject: Bangladeshi Union/Political Leader Assassinated; Your Support
Article: 124668
To: undisclosed-recipients:;

Bangladeshi Union/Political Leader Assassinated; Your Support is Needed!

OWC Campaign News, August 2001

On Thursday, August 2nd, at 8:30 p.m., Iqbal Majumder, a pioneer of the labor movement of Bangladesh, was cowardly assassinated by a bullet shot into his neck while he was entering his home. Brother Majumder was the General Secretary of the Bangladeshi Jatiyo Sramik Federation (Bangladesh Workers Trade Union Federation) as well as the President of the Jute Spinning & Twine Mill Workers & Employees Federation.

Brother Majumber was also National Secretary of the Ganatantric Majdoor Party (Workers Democratic Party of Bangladesh), which is affiliated to the International Liaison Committee for a Workers International (ILC).

To protest the assassination of Iqbal Majumder, trade unionists and working people across Bangladesh have staged massive protest rallies and meetings. Reports of these protest actions are reaching the OWC every day. All the actions are being organized to demand that the government conduct an immediate investigation into this assassination (through a Judicial Inquiry Commission) and that the perpetrators of this heinous crime be brought to justice.

Please find below the message addressed by Daniel Gluckstein, on behalf of the International Liaison Committee for a Workers' International, regarding the assassination of Brother Majumder.

We request that you please call or send a fax to the Political Section of the Embassy of Bangladesh in Washington, D.C., requesting an immediate investigation into the assassination of Brother Majumder as well as the prompt punishment of the perpetrator(s) of this crime. The Embassy numbers are: (tel.) 202-244-0183; (fax) 202-244-0183.

We also request that you please send a message of condolence/support to Brother Majumder's trade union and political comrades in Bangladesh, c/o Brother Tafazzul Hussain at the following email address: <>. (Please send a copy of your message to <>.)

Thank you for your attention to this urgent matter,

In Solidarity,

Alan Benjamin

Message to the members of the Bangladesh Democratic Workers Party, to the members of the BJSF, and to all the workers and activists of Bangladesh

Dear Sisters and Brothers:

Please allow us, in the name of the International Liaison Committee for a Workers' International and all the affiliated organizations (as in the name of the French Workers Party), to share the enormous pain which you are feeling in the aftermath of the assassination of Brother Iqbal Majumder.

Iqbal Majumder was a well-known and respected political figure of the Bangladesh labor movement. During all the major moments of the class struggle in his country, in particular in the struggle against privatizations which threaten to liquidate the country's industrial base, he was alongside his trade union comrades on the front lines of the fightback. In the face of the enormous pressures in Bangladesh as throughout the world which are aimed at co-opting trade unions, Iqbal Majumder always responded by the need to preserve trade union independence.

Politically, Iqbal Majumder was one of the first militants in Bangladesh to understand that the crisis of decay of the labor movement—especially since the collapse of the USSR—placed on the political agenda the need to build independent workers' parties and a new international framework of organization. So it was normal for him to be among the founders of the Bangladesh Democratic Workers Party and to play an essential role in preserving it against the attempts to destabilize it. This is what led the recent congress of the Democratic Workers Party to re-elect him as national secretary.

Deeply internationalist, Iqbal Majumder was part of the international delegation, held at the initiative of the ILC, which went to the International Monetary Fund headquarters in Washington in February 1994. It was the first time that I met Iqbal. I remember him strongly accusing the IMF as being responsible for the destruction of the industrial fabric of Bangladesh.

For Iqbal, internationalism was in no way contradictory with his legitimate attachment to the national sovereignty of the Bangladeshi nation. Like all the activists of his generation, he had participated in the uprising of his people in the war which, in 1971, won his country's independence, at the cost of uncountable lives. Proud of the Bangladeshi culture and language, he had learned from his country's tragic history that the sovereignty of the nation had been won within the same movement which had nationalized the industrial base.

Having been invited to attend the recent congress of the Democratic Workers Party, I remember listening to Iqbal as he patiently and relentlessly explained how fighting back against privatization is the only way to defend the sovereignty of the nation.

Iqbal Majumder's internationalism brought him to join the ranks of the Fourth International. For him, it was clear that the emancipation of the Bangladeshi workers and nation were inseparable, that the emancipation of the workers and peoples throughout the world from the chains of exploitation and oppression can only be achieved by abolishing the system of private ownership of the means of production.

What is the identity of Iqbal Majumder's assassins? Who gave the order to assassinate him? At this instant, we do not know the answer to these questions. The Bangladesh Democratic Workers Party, together with all the labor and democratic organizations of the country, has called upon the government to immediately open an inquiry so that those guilty of this crime can be identified and duly punished.

The International Liaison Committee takes up this demand. It calls upon all the world's democratic and labor organizations to pay homage to the memory of the worker and revolutionary fighter, the Trotskyist activist Iqbal Majumder. It calls upon them to prepare to relay internationally the campaign which our comrades of the Democratic Workers Party are launching for the truth to be known and justice done.

In the name of all workers and democratic organizations and activists the world over, but also in my own personal name, as I was invited on two occasions to attend the conferences and congresses of the Bangladeshi comrades, I would like to send my fraternal greetings to all Iqbal Majumder's comrades in struggle, to his friends, to his family.

A special fraternal greeting to his two close comrades in struggle, Taffazul Hussain and Ripon Holque.

I salute your memory, Iqbal Majumder.

Daniel Gluckstein,
International Liaison Committee for a Workers' International