The United Nations' Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) report of its investigation into human rights violations in Sri Lanka found “reasonable grounds to believe that gross violations of international human rights law … were committed.” The investigation deals with the period between February 2002 and November 2011. It thus includes the final years of the war between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The LTTE fought for an independent Tamil homeland in the north and east of the island of Sri Lanka and was defeated in May 2009.
In Geneva, Switzerland, earlier this month, a range of human rights groups co-sponsored a side event during the 30th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) addressing “the extensive use of torture and other forms of cruel and degrading treatment in the Saudi criminal justice system”.
Workers from Venezuela's 'housing mission', which is building large numbers of public housing, march on Venezuela's independence day, July 5. Photo from Venezuela Analysis. Venezuela's Bolivarian revolution has transformed the country since the rise to power of late socialist president Hugo Chavez in 1998 on a platform of tackling poverty and promoting participatory democracy.
Whether or not it is true, the internet has decided that British Prime Minister David Cameron probably put his private parts into the mouth of a dead pig when he was at Oxford. The allegations have been made by extremely well-connected Establishment figures, former Conservative Party Deputy Chairman Lord Michael Ashcroft and former Sunday Times political editor Isabel Oakeshott, and is published in the Daily Mail. This is the highest possible tier of character assassination in British politics.
SYRIZA pulled off a remarkable victory at the September 20 Greek election. Although burdened by its acceptance of the draconian austerity measures in the third memorandum imposed by Greece's creditors and eight months of rule in the midst of recession, closed banks and capital controls, SYRIZA's vote fell by only 0.88% and its parliamentary seats by just four.
Threats from a senior general that the army would take “direct action” against a possible Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour government show a jaw-dropping contempt for democracy. Top brass “wouldn’t stand” for a prime minister committed to international peace, said the September 20 Sunday Times, and would be prepared to use “fair means or foul” to stop a PM who “jeopardise[s] the security of this country”. The outspoken military chief remains anonymous, of course.
Jeremy Corbyn. Photo: Stopwar.org.uk. Jeremy Corbyn’s election as Labour leader has raised hopes for people who oppose Britain's wars. More than in any other area, it will take a mighty effort to make those hopes real. There is no other area in which national politics so ignores the population at large. On the economy, health, education and so on, there is at least debate.
"This morning marks 50 days since the start of this important dispute," Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) Sydney branch assistant secretary Paul Garrett told Green Left Weekly on September 25. He was speaking at the community assembly outside the Hutchison Ports terminal at Port Botany, which was set up after the company's sudden sacking of 97 waterside workers by text and email on August 6.
The Victorian Allied Health Professionals Association (VAHPA) has begun an industrial campaign with the current pay deal due to finish at the end of the year. There are about 7500 VAHPA members in the public sector. Health professionals include physiotherapists, medical imaging technologists and social workers. The union recently conducted a survey that found 49% of health professionals were considering leaving their current employer and almost 25% were actively seeking work outside the health sector.