714

Riot
Directed by Leticia Caceres
Written by Vanessa Bates, David Brown, Stefo Nantsou and Sarah Gava
Designed by Joshua Mason
Newcastle Civic Playhouse
Bookings 02 4929 1977
Until June 23
Wherever President George Bush went in Europe this June, whether he was meeting with G8 leaders, Pope Benedict, presidents or opposition leaders of NATO allies, or rightist officials in the former socialist countries, he provided an excellent reason for the people to come out in the streets, often in massive numbers.
The recent storms that devastated much of the NSW Central Coast and the Hunter Valley were described by some as a mini cyclone. The fierce gales led to dramatic floods — the most severe since the 1970s, the deaths of several people and the beaching of a coal freighter on a Newcastle reef.
“The ABC’s Four Corners program on June 11, ‘Ghost Prisoners’, was a powerful exposure of the United States’ global torture network and of Australian complicity in it”, said Socialist Alliance spokesperson Raul Bassi. “It’s another step towards justice for Mamdouh Habib, one of the victims of this criminal system that has tortured some to death, forced others into worthless ’confessions’ and disappeared hundreds.”
On June 12, 80 people attended a meeting in support of two Tamil activists who were recently arrested for allegedly sending tsunami relief funds to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
LaborStart.org reports that on June 7 Mikhail Chesalin, chairperson of the local Dockers Union of Russia in Kaliningrad, was savagely stabbed and beaten outside the union office. He was stabbed numerous times in the spine and severely beaten about the head. His assailants left him lying face-down, unconscious, in a pool of blood. Chesalin’s colleagues believe that the attack was orchestrated by Vladimir Kalinichenko, the general director of Kaliningrad Sea Commercial Port, where the dockworkers’ union is currently running an organising campaign. Kalinichenko has tried to break up union events by sending his personal “security” forces, together with local thugs, to spy on and intimidate workers. Visit http://www.labourstart.org for more information.
Fifty people demonstrated outside the defence plaza on June 15 to protest the beginning of the Talisman Sabre military exercises at Shoalwater Bay.
Farmers in East Nusa Tenggara have lost 25-40% of their income due to irregular rainfall. Fishers in the Maluku islands are experiencing poor catches as they lose their ability to predict sea climate and fish movements. Climate change has arrived in Indonesia, and it is hitting the country’s poorest first and hardest, according to a survey by Oxfam. Oxfam said that in recent years the rainy season has been either late or so unpredictable farmers did not know when to start planting, resulting in failed harvests and a drastic drop in income, and widespread hunger and malnutrition, especially among children.
Socialist Alliance hosted a discussion on June 12 about standing up to the “police state” laws introduced into the NSW parliament for the period of the September APEC summit. One person arrested in connection with the G20 protests in Melbourne last November told the meeting that police had directed him not to attend the APEC protests. He urged participants not to be intimidated by such tactics.
Hundreds of Papuans rallied on June 8 during a one-day visit by Hina Jilani, the UN secretary general’s special representative on human rights defenders. In Jayapura, capital of Papua province, protesters welcomed Jilani while others called on her to “stop the genocide of the Papuans” and “stop the killing in West Papua”. In Manokwari, capital of the province of West Papua, protesters called on the UN to pressure Jakarta to overturn the 1969 referendum that resulted in the territory’s incorporation into Indonesia.

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