The Aboriginal Provisional Government (APG) made the following media release on May 12, 2015. * * * APG diplomat Pekeri Ruska (Goenpul/Yuggera) was harassed and threatened by customs officials at Brisbane international airport this afternoon after presenting only her Aboriginal passport which had been stamped on entry and exit from Honiara, Solomon Islands.
Two new global developments emphasised the growing momentum of the global boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign targetting Israel. The campaign was launched in 2005 by more than 100 Palestinian civil society groups in a bid to isolate Israel over its polices of occupation and apartheid against Palestinians.
President Nicolas Maduro at International Workers' Day celebrations in Caracas, May 1. Braving the heat, more than 100,000 Venezuelans flooded the streets of Caracas on May 1 to commemorate the International Workers' Day and gains for working people under the Bolivarian Revolution.
Demonstrators gathered outside Baltimore City Hall on May 3 to celebrate the restoration of their right to protest without harsh controls in an all-too-rare case of a step towards justice in struggles against police brutality, TeleSUR English said the next day.
Protests have rocked the streets of Baltimore, Maryland, after African-American man Freddie Gray died in police custody. Gray was stopped by police while chatting with a friend in broad daylight. After being arrested Gray's spinal cord was broken, and after being in a coma he later died. Baltimore City's Police Department admitted responsibility, saying they mishandled Gray's injury and should have called paramedics earlier.
Khury Petersen-Smith is a 32-year-old African American activist based in Boston, who is actively involved in the growing “Black Lives matter” struggle sweeping the US. I was able to speak with Petersen-Smith, a member of the International Socialist Organization, at the Marxism 2015 conference organised by Socialist Alternative in Melbourne over Easter, at which he was a featured guest.
A 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on April 25. By May 1, 120 aftershocks had occurred. The death toll had passed 7800 by May 8 and will almost certainly reach 10,000 or more, as information trickles in from the rural areas. More than 16,000 people are injured and this number will also rise.
Thousands of German train drivers and railway workers began a week-long strike on May 5, the longest in the country’s post-war history. About two thirds of Germany’s long distance trains and a third of regional trains have been cancelled, with trains in the eastern region around Halle, Leipzig, and Dresden reduced to about 15% of services. Some subway systems were also affected, including in Hamburg and Berlin. Deutsche Bahn (DB) carries a fifth of Germany's freight transport — about 1 million tonnes per day — as well as moving 5.5 million passengers daily.
During his visit to Sri Lanka, Australian immigration minister Peter Dutton said the transfer of refugees to Cambodia would “happen very shortly”. Dutton said he wanted to send “a small group” to the south-east Asian country to “send a clear message to the remaining people on Nauru that Cambodia is an appropriate option to consider to start a new life”. The Australian government has been trying to persuade refugees held on Nauru to volunteer to settle in Cambodia, which signed a deal with Australia to take refugees in exchange for aid.
In The Company Of Cowards: Bush, Howard & Injustice at Guantanamo Michael Mori Viking, 2014 292 pages, $29.99 (pb) Murder At Camp Delta: A Staff Sergeant’s Pursuit Of The Truth About Guantanamo Bay Joseph Hickman Simon & Schuster, 2015 245 pages, $29.99 (pb) Major Michael Mori was a Republican-leaning, US military lawyer who “embraced the values I had been taught in scouts, sports, high school, college, law school and the Marines” — above all the ideal of fair play.
For three months, from November to February, the Spanish economic and political establishment was in a state of barely suppressed panic. In national opinion polls, support for the “reds” - in the form of radical new force Podemos - had overtaken that for the establishment parties, the ruling People’s Party (PP) and the opposition Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE).
The Global Tamil Forum issued a statement on May 1 evaluating the first months of in office of Sri Lanka's new president Maithripala Sirisena. In presidential elections in January, Sirisena defeated the incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa, who had presided over a genocidal war against the Tamil people and then kept them under military occupation. The GTF praised Sirisena for amending the Sri Lankan constitution to cut the power of the president and increase the power of parliament.
ADELAIDE Come to the National Sorry Day: Stolen Generations track home on Tuesday May 26 at 10.30am – 2.30pm. Join the Stolen Generations calling for reparations with speakers, music, bbq and drinks. Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga. Ph John Browne 0431 234 561. BRISBANE Join the Rally for the future: Lock the gate on Thursday May 21 at 10am. Speakers’ Corner, outside Parliament House, George St. BENDIGO Come to a rally to stop the community closures on Friday May 15 at 4.30pm. Rosalind Park. MELBOURNE
COURT SAYS LANDOWNER CAN REFUSE ACCESS TO COAL COMPANY The Land and Environment Court has upheld Wendy Bowman’s right to refuse a coal company access to her land. The landmark decision means that Chinese-owned Yancoal cannot proceed with the South East Open Cut mine near Glennies Creek.
When thousands of people hit Melbourne's streets on May 1 to protest planned closures of Aboriginal communities, the Herald Sun followed up its front page denunciation of a similar April 9 protest as a “selfish rabble” with a special double page-spread under the headline: “Still Selfish. Still A Rabble.”
On May 2, following the rally in King George Square to oppose the forced closures of Indigenous Communities in WA, activists spontaneously marched into the Auditorium of City Hall and occupied it. The Aboriginal flag was strung over the podium and we engaged in a peaceful but uncompromising sit-in demanding the media's presence to cover our resistance to what is happening in W.A.