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A hunger strike will be held on October 20-21 in the Parramatta Activist Centre in solidarity with the “death fast resistance” that has been carried out by Turkish political prisoners since October 20, 2000.

For the second consecutive year, Grassroots, a broad left-wing ticket has won a majority on the governing council of the Wollongong Undergraduate Students Association (WUSA). The elections were held on October 3-5.

On October 2, the Sydney-based Edmund Rice Centre (ERC) released its Deported to Danger II report, examining the fate of people whose claims for asylum in Australia were rejected. The report found that 39 of the 41 were deported to danger. Two have been welcomed in New Zealand.

The report handed down by Queensland deputy coroner Christine Clements on September 27 found that Palm Islander Mulrunji not only died in police custody on November 19, 2004, but died at the hands of the arresting police officer.

The trial of four activists who inspected the top secret US-Australia spy base at Pine Gap for terrorist activity began on October 4. Jim Dowling, Adele Goldie, Bryan Law (Cairns) and Donna Mulhearn, members of Christians Against ALL Terrorism (CAAT), face charges under the Commonwealth Crimes Act and the Defence (Special Undertakings) Act (DSU) 1952. If found guilty they face seven years’ prison.

When invited to address an October 12 rally in defence of women’s right to abortion, both Labor Premier Steve Bracks and state Liberal Party leader Ted Baillieu declined to attend. The rally, held on the steps of the state parliament, was initiated by the Socialist Alliance.

On October 10, 60 people attended a public meeting at which the keynote speaker, historian Henry Reynolds, spoke about the ongoing oppression of Indigenous Australians.

“Ain’t that the truth”, said the Socialist Alliance’s lead upper house candidate in next March’s NSW state election, Susan Price. “And it sums up why we’re running against them.”

Thirty people protested outside the US consulate on October 13 calling for justice for five Cubans unfairly imprisoned in the United States. The Cuban Five helped expose the activities of US-based terrorists planning attacks on Cuba, for which they were imprisoned, even while known terrorists in Miami walk free. Cuba solidarity activist Tim Anderson told the crowd that the Cuban government is not going to let the case rest until justice is achieved.

Architects for Peace, Australia, took an active part in the protests against Israel’s attacks on Lebanon and Palestine. Beatriz Maturana, a founder of the group, told Green Left Weekly that the group formed in February 2003, in response to the invasion of Iraq. It continues to campaign against the US-led occupation of Iraq.

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