Britain's May 7 general elections, in which the Conservative Party won an outright majority, produced a couple of silver linings on a very large black cloud. One was the success of the Green Party of England and Wales. While the party did not sweep into Westminster, it made progress politically and in terms of votes.
As Nepal struggles to revive from the catastrophe caused by the April 25 earthquake that registered 7.8 on the Moment Magnitude Scale and its aftershocks, Latin America's socialist governments are busy soothing the wounds of the Nepalese people. The orange-coloured team of Venezuelan aid workers and white-coloured medical team from Cuba have brought to the people of Nepal the spirit of Argentine-born Cuban revolutionary Che Guevara and Venezuela's late revolutionary president Hugo Chavez.
Popular left-wing activist activist Ada Colau has won Barcelona's May 24 mayoral elections. Running on the ticket of Barcelona Together, which united several left groups and grassroots activists, Colau came first with 25% of the vote.
Condolences and tributes to legendary revolutionary and champion of women’s rights Nora Castaneda have been pouring in from across Venezuela after news of the activist’s death on May 16. An economist, university lecturer and much-loved revolutionary, Castaneda is renowned for having founded and presided over Venezuela’s internationally celebrated Women’s Development Bank, “Banmujer” since 2001. She was also one of the chief protagonists of Venezuela's working-class women’s movement that emerged in the 1980s.
More than 300 migration experts and academics have condemned the European Union's plan of military intervention against the surge of smuggling boats heading to Europe across the Mediterranean Sea. The academics’ strong condemnation of the plan comes after Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi compared the current migrant crisis to the 18th and 19th century slave trade. In a recent article for the New York Times, he wrote that “human traffickers are the slave traders of the 21st century, and they should be brought to justice”.
The fossil fuel industry receives US$5.3 trillion a year in government subsidies, despite its disastrous toll on the environment, human health, and other global inequality issues, a new report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has found. That means that governments worldwide are spending $10 million every minute to fund energy companies — more than the estimated public health spending for the entire globe.
Palestinian Authority (PA) foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki has described Venezuela as “Palestine's most important ally”, Venezuelanalysis.com said on May 19. Al-Maliki made the comments while in Caracas for bilateral talks with Venezuela's socialist government.
A new popular uprising has started in Peru at the port of Callao, crucial for international trade and the handling of the majority of the country’s seaborne cargo. After 10 months of unresolved negotiations with transnational company, APM Terminals Peruvian longshore workers from the port of Callao, west of Lima, decided to take to the streets and march. This latest demonstration follows an earlier strike against the company on May 13, with workers demanding pay rises in relation to the company's profits, full healthcare coverage, and training.
Traces of chemicals commonly used for fracking were found in the drinking water supply of three homes in Bradford County in the US state of Pennsylvania, a study revealed on May 18. The investigation, which appeared in scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, proved the long-held worry of damaging underground drinking water sources from the method of extracting gases known as hydraulic fracturing. The report explicitly links the practice with the affected water systems.
More than 200 environmental activists blocked a terminal in Seattle’s port to protest against Royal Dutch Shell’s imminent plans to begin drilling for oil in the Arctic. A huge vessel, named Polar Pioneer, is temporarily stationed at the port before heading out to the Arctic to explore for oil. If successful, it will be the first time the multinational has exploited oil in the Arctic.