1248

Louay Alzaher, a member of the Iraqi community in Brisbane, told Green Left Weekly that corruption, food shortages and high levels of unemployment have been the catalysts of the protest movement that has erupted in Iraq.

“The significance of the Iraqi movement is enormous, as it seeks to fight for the freedom of Iraq from control and influence, including the total removal of United States military bases from the country,” said Alzaher.

Surya Anta Ginting, the national spokesperson for the pro-independence Indonesian People's Front for West Papua — who along with five other Papuan activists is being held in Jakarta's notorious Salemba prison awaiting trial on treason charges — is reportedly seriously ill.

Anta's wife Lucia Fransisca told reporters that she visited him on November 29 and found that he and the other five Papuan detainees were ill and were not receiving proper medical treatment.

Far-right extremist Phillip Galea was convicted of planning a terrorist attack. His convinction is welcome, writes Sue Bolton, but others need to be brought to account.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres delivered another bleak warning about the climate emergency on December 2. He told the 197 country leaders assembled that global average levels of carbon dioxide have now gone over what used to be considered an “unthinkable global tipping point”.

A snap action was held on December 5 after three Extinction Rebellion activists were denied bail after they were arrested for peacefully protesting on a coal train the day before.

Anna Reynolds from Action Ready told Green Left that that denying bail is "totally unprecedented and seems to undermine fundamental aspects of the justice system".

In October last year, the federal government finally established a royal commission into aged care, after a Senate inquiry received numerous complaints among its 5000 submissions.

According to newsGP, a publication of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), the problems in aged care range from “poor standards of care, physical assaults and extremely challenging working conditions”.

TAFE staff and supporters rallied outside the Sydney campus on November 28 to demand the NSW government halt its job cuts.

Union members and commuters protested outside New South Wales Coalition Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s office in Martin Place on December 2 in response to her government’s plan to privatise the remainder of Sydney’s bus services.

Buses have already been sold off in the city's inner west and Newcastle, with disastrous results for commuters, including buses running late, service and route cuts and the loss of many bus stops.

The Coalition’s union-busting Ensuring Integrity Bill failed to pass after One Nation leader Pauline Hanson changed her position. But Sam Wainwright writes that it reveals a serious strategic and political weakness in the union movement.

First Nations people's knowledge and rights have been overlooked as the largest privatisation of water on the planet has been underway. Below Tracey Carpenter examines how the privatisation of this most precious resource — water — has enriched a few at the expense of many.

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