Australia

The second day of the trial of Perth protester Kamala Emanuel ended on January 24 with no verdict from the magistrate. Emanuel was charged with failing to comply with a police officer's direction to leave a legal, peaceful rally last April. Twenty people protested outside the court in support of the right to protest without police interference.

About 80 people rallied outside the Woodside office in Broome on January 15 to protest the decision by Indigenous affairs minister Peter Collier to allow drilling in the dunes as part work for an LNG processing site. Protesters say this will disturb Aboriginal sacred sites in the area. Photos by Zeb Parkes.

The Wilderness Society released this statement on January 15. *** The Broome community is outraged at the Minister’s decision announced today to give WA Aboriginal Heritage Act Section 18 clearance to allow Woodside to drill in the dunes west of Manari Road as part of their investigation work for an LNG processing site.

The Ninth National Conference of the Socialist Alliance will be held in Geelong (Victoria), from January 18-20, 2013. It is open to all Socialist Alliance members and invited guests.

At a meeting on December 19, Liverpool City Council resolved to oppose the proposed Stage 3 Northern Expansion of the Camden Gas Project (CGP). The council also resolved to make a submission to the NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure (DP&I) outlining its reasons for opposing the project. The proposed Stage 3 expansion of the of the CGP consists of the development of 11 more drill sites, each with up to six well heads, in an area running from Blairmont in the south to Denham Court in the north, in south west Sydney.
While Australia and Sri Lanka battled it out at the Sydney Cricket Ground early this month, a Sri Lankan Tamil asylum seeker on a bridging visa living in Hamilton Hill, a victim of torture, died in Fremantle Hospital after attempting suicide last Thursday. The tragic event played out as momentum grows for a boycott of Sri Lankan cricket, lead by former cricket writer for The Age Trevor Grant.
Australia became one of the first countries in the world to introduce a single mothers’ benefit in 1973. This was extended to single fathers in 1977. The single mothers’ benefit was an important reform, helping many women escape from difficult or violent relationships and reducing poverty among children.
Hashim bin Rashid, 25, the general secretary of the Lahore branch of the Awami Workers Party — recently formed out of the merger of three left parties in Pakistan — will be the international guest speaker at the Socialist Alliance ninth national conference to be held in Geelong Trades Hall, over January 18-20. He replaces Alia Amirali who was not given a visa by Australian authorities in time to travel to the conference.
As this century progresses, the record high temperatures experienced across Australia in the past few months will no longer be dangerous departures from the norm, but a regular feature of Australian summers. This is one of the conclusions reached in a draft of the fifth assessment report of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which was leaked and published online last month.
A “dome of heat” has settled over Australia, causing a heatwave in every state and territory and widespread bushfires. Tasmania has been the worst hit with 150 homes damaged or destroyed.
The Socialist Alliance released this statement in solidarity with the international movement against violence against women on January 4. *** The Socialist Alliance stands in solidarity with the growing movement in India fighting violence against women. Progressive forces in that country have braved police brutality and repression, mobilising massive turnouts at protests against gender violence. The wave of protests was sparked by the horrific rape on December 15, and the consequent death, of a 23-year-old woman in Delhi.
Photos taken by refugees of their living conditions in the Australian detention camp on Manus Island have led to a new round of “systematic assault on asylum seekers’ basic rights”, according to Refugee Action Coalition spokesperson Nick Riemer.