Action updates

Issue 

ADELAIDE — National Action were stopped in their tracks in Glenelg by about 400 angry protesters and supportive onlookers on April 22. The anti-racist protesters refused to allow National Action to march until their flag poles were confiscated, but after this was done the police dispersed their rally and arrested their leader, Michael Brander. The Anti-Racism Alliance was very pleased with the rally, which attracted a very wide range of nationalities and age groups.

  • The Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance is launching an "Arts Cuts Suck" campaign against threats by the state Liberal government to cut the 1995-96 arts budget by around $2.2 million. MEAA which will publicise the proposed cuts at entertainment events and is planning a cabaret on 29 April.

  • Nearly 200 people attended the third public meeting within the month of the Save Our Stations campaign on April 20, outraged at the recently announced decision to close three passenger stations on the Adelaide to Belair rail line. Hawthorn, Millswood and Clapham stations are due to be closed on April 28. There had been no prior consultation with the community. John Crossing, secretary of the Public Transport Union, received the loudest ovation of the night when he suggested that PTU drivers may launch an industrial campaign at these stations.

BRISBANE — Pinkenba residents will fight "tooth and nail" to stop the Brisbane City Council building a waste-treatment plant in their suburb, a community spokesperson said on April 21. Ted Mailes, representing the Pinkenba Residents Against Toxic Site group, said the community would campaign vigorously against the council's plans. PRATS held a public meeting to protest against the waste plant proposal on April 22.

CANBERRA — Koalas carrying placards saying "Boral is immoral" were part of the street theatre organised by the Wilderness Society to mark the April 18 international day of action against woodchipping. Other activities included a petition stall, information about a national phone-in campaign against the destruction of Tasmania's Tarkine wilderness and a group of activists with rock-climbing skills scaling the State Bank skyscraper to drop a banner naming Boral, Mitsubishi, Reflex Paper and Kleenex Products as woodchip industry offenders.

DARWIN — Nuclear-capable US warships in Darwin for joint military exercises were the target of 20 anti-nuclear activists on Sunday, April 16. Dressed as Easter bunnies and carrying a mock cruise missile, activists paddled kayaks past warships moored in Darwin harbour. They were met at Lameroo Beach by drummers and a banner reading "Earthcare Not Warfare". The demonstration was called by Everyone for a Nuclear Free Future (ENUFF). For information about future actions phone 811 984.

  • The Indonesia and Regional Conflict and Resolution Conference is being planned here in July. It will discuss and plan strategies over issues of struggle in East Timor, West Papua, Bougainville and Indonesia. The conference planning committee has involved local East Timorese, Australians for a Free East Timor, the National Council for Maubere Resistance, Student Supporters of East Timor, Resistance members and other activists. Oporto University in Portugal has offered funding to bring eight speakers from the pro-democracy movement in Indonesia and two from the Philippines. For details, write to GPO Box 2155, Darwin NT 0801 or telephone/fax Wes on (089) 832 113.

MELBOURNE — Three hundred people attended a Save Princes Park rally on April 9. The park is threatened by Optus' plans to build a football oval. Community activists spoke, including Iain Stewart, from the Save Albert Park campaign, who pointed out the similarities between the two campaigns. Lack of environmental assessment, lack of community consultation, secret deals with companies and creating exceptional legislation to override the laws were tactics used by the Kennett government in both cases.

NEWCASTLE — On April 20, Trades Hall Council heard a report from Resistance activist Kamala Emanuel on the Resistance National Day of Action for freedom for East Timor, and endorsed the action, which in Newcastle will consist of a speak-out in the Hunter Street mall and a procession to the Tax Office. The council noted that it has always supported the struggle of the East Timorese, and gave strong support for the demand of ending military ties with Indonesia.