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Palestinians protest in support of jailed journalist Mohammed al-Qeq

Thirty three-year-old Mohammed al-Qeq, a Palestinian journalist who has being held for more than six months in administrative detention without charge or trial in an Israeli prison, ended a 94 day hunger strike on February 26.

Al-Qeq ended the strike — the longest by any Palestinian prisoner — after Israel agreed not to renew his administrative detention order, which ends on May 21, AFP said that day.

Twenty graduating Qantas apprentices have become the first aircraft maintenance engineers in decades to complete their training without being offered secure positions by the airline.

The Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union, the Australian Workers Union and the Electrical Trades Union intervened in the Fair Work Commission on February 7 to stop Qantas terminating their employment.

International Mother Language Day on February 21 is dedicated to celebrating, preserving and protecting languages of all peoples.

In the week leading up to the day, media reported that late last year, Northern Territory MLA Bess Price was told off by parliamentary speaker Kezia Purick for using Warlpiri, her first language, in parliament. Purick told Price “the language of the assembly is English”, although it remains to be seen where, exactly, that rule is written down.

A rally of 200 bicycle riders and their supporters was held in the early morning of February 18 in front of NSW State Parliament.

The riders were opposing the introduction of mandatory photo identification for riders and a massive increase in fines.

There has been no evidence produced by the Mike Baird government that these measures will lead to greater safety for riders and other road users.

Riders argue the new rules will be a disincentive to riding, especially for children, as anyone over the age of 12 years is not allowed to ride on the footpath.


Bolivian Vice-President Alvaro Garcia Linera and President Evo Morales.

The “no” vote narrowly won with 51.3% of the vote in a February 21 referendum in Bolivia held to resolve whether left-wing President Evo Morales could run again in 2019.

The vote, involving an unprecedented participation rate of 90% of registered voters, was over whether to change the constitution to allow a president and vice-president to stand for re-election twice.

Green Left Weekly hosted a forum on February 17: “After the Paris Climate Talks: Which way forward for the climate movement?”, with John Englart (citizen journalist, observer at Paris Talks); David Spratt (climate policy analyst, People's Climate March organiser) and me (Socialist Alliance and grassroots climate activist).

Paris Agreement

John Englart summarised the main parts of the Paris Agreement:
• A warming target of well below 2°C, with efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C;


Kurdish women staged a sit-in in Strasbourg against the silence of European institutions over Turkey's crime

A coalition of pro-Kurdish European groups held a five day sit-in in front of European institutions in Strasbourg in eastern France, starting on February 23, to protest Europe's silence on the Turkish government's ongoing massacre of Kurds. The action targeted the European Court of Human Rights.

Profits have soared for the operator of Australia's detention camps for asylum seekers in Papua New Guinea on Manus Island and on Nauru.

Broadspectrum, which used to be called Transfield Services, announced it had trebled its net profit for the first half of the year to $25.1 million.

Broadspectrum has been awarded a 12-month extension on its contract providing operational, welfare and security services to asylum seekers on Nauru and Manus Island. It has told investors it is the "preferred tenderer" for a new five-year contract it hopes to sign this year.

Economics After Capitalism: A Guide to the Ruins & a Road to the Future
By Derek Wall
Pluto Press, 2015

Derek Wall, ecosocialist activist and international coordinator of the Green Party of England and Wales, has written a primer on the main strands of economic critique of globalised capitalism.

It is a short and easily readable book, well suited to someone looking for a starting place. For those already embedded in one of these strands, it provides a welcome introduction to some of the others.

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