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A New Zealand’s trade union hands a letter of protest to a ship carrying phosphate from the Sahara

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The Federal Crimson, a ship chartered by Kiwi company Ravensdown, arrived, Sunday, at the port of Lyttelton in New Zealand, carrying 51 thousand tons of phosphate from Western Sahara.

Upon its arrival, the Rail & Maritime Transport Union (RMTU), a trade union that represents transport workers at the port, handed a letter of protest to the ship's captain, wrote Scoop Business.

«Last month the Council of Trade Unions (CTU) passed a resolution condemning Morocco’s illegal occupation of Western Sahara and calling upon the New Zealand government to halt importation of phosphates from the area. As an affiliate to the CTU the RMTU registered our protest by meeting the captain of the vessel in the early hours of this morning and handing him a letter that included the CTU resolution», RMTU General Secretary Wayne Butson said.

In November, Ravensdown spokesman Gareth Richards said that the company is «open to the idea of discussing the issue with stakeholders and had initiated discussion with the unions», referring to RMTU.

«Ravensdown acknowledges the right to protest, despite our perspectives being different. For example, the trade is legal, complies with UN expectations and welcomed by the Saharawi who are employed at the Phosboucraa mine», Richards said.

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