Australia

On September 14, the Yungaba Action Group (YAG) protested at the Bligh Labor government’s community cabinet in Carindale as part of the campaign to save the historic migrant cultural centre from being sold off for private development.

The Victorian Abortion Law Reform bill was passed by the parliament’s lower house on September 12 after more than 70 hours of debate. This may finally mean that abortion is removed from the state’s Crimes Act dating back to 1958. Until the bill is passed, abortion remains a crime.

The Fairfax Media workers’ strike on August 28-31 signalled growing troubles in the Australian media industry.

The United States administration has stepped up pressure to ban Hezbollah TV station Al-Manar (The Beacon) in Australia and Indonesia.

On September 5, the government’s climate change adviser, Professor Ross Garnaut, released his recommendations for medium-term cuts to Australian greenhouse gas emissions.

The Australian Food and Grocery Council has attacked a Senate inquiry’s recommendation for national container deposit legislation, calling the approach “inefficient” and likely to cause price increases.

Information released under freedom of information (FOI) laws shows that NSW Police is keeping detailed documentation about numerous groups and individuals on the political left. Police intelligence assessments have targeted a variety groups, including Mutiny and Greenpeace.

On September 4, the federal Labor government introduced a bill in parliament to partially end discrimination against same-sex couples.

People in Australia are being urged to pressure the federal parliament to pass a resolution calling on the Japanese government to apologise and provide compensation to the “comfort women” of World War Two.

The dumping or resignation of half a dozen ministers from the NSW Labor government over the last fortnight — brought on by internal warfare over the cabinet’s refusal to scrap its electricity privatisation plan — has still not convinced the new premier and ALP power-brokers to drop the plan altogether.

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