Kerry Smith

The unfolding Latin American revolution and the call by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to build “socialism of the 21st century” will be big features of the “World at a Crossroads” conference to be held in Sydney over the Easter weekend.

The 13 forest activists sued over the protester-led shutdown of Gunns Ltd’s Triabunna woodchip mill in December, lodged their defence in the Launceston Supreme Court on February 3.

Nine young Tamil activists staged a hunger strike in Sydney’s CBD from January 28. They urged the Australian government to support calls for a ceasefire between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and the Sri Lankan military.

Areyonga community members have begun a campaign to defend teaching in Pitjantjatjara at their local school.

Bette Boreham, an activist recently returned from volunteer work in Kiribati, told a Socialist Alliance meeting on November 12 about how the low-lying Pacific Island country is facing annihilation by rising seas. Boreham spoke of the courage of the Kiribati people, and the horror of knowing their country would soon be gone. She also recounted the important role that Cuban doctors are playing in the country, providing essential medical care.

“Socialism 2008 — Malaysia”, a conference hosted by the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) in Kajang, Selangor, over November 7-9, brought together more than 500 activists from around Malaysia, as well as from Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Australia, Britain, Sweden and Taiwan.

On November 15, thousands of people took to the streets across Australia to demand that governments take much more urgent and serious action to stop the global warming that is threatening life on Earth.

On November 7, rallies in support of Lex Wotton took place around the country as Wotton was sentenced in Townsville to six years’ prison for “riot with destruction”.

On November 1, rallies took place in eastern states in response to the conviction of Lex Wotton, who has been charged with “riot with destruction” (see article on page 3).

Around 60 Cuba solidarity activists gathered outside the United States consulate in the CBD on October 25.

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