There are reports dozens of police have gathered outside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, in the early hours of August 16, and there are reports some police have been seen entering the building. It is feared a raid to kidnap WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange, who is inside the building seeking asylum from Ecuador. However, this would run the risk of an extreme diplomatic incident. * * * Brisbane: EMERGENCY RALLY TODAY August 16, 4pm. Vigil outside Department of Foreign Affairs in Ann St.
At least eight same-sex couples said “I do” in a mass illegal wedding ceremony on the steps of Melbourne's Old Treasury Building on August 11. More than 3000 people attended Equal Love's annual mass protest in the Melbourne CBD. The protest, which began with a rally at the State Library, was part of a series of actions held in cities across Australia. It has been an annual event since the former John Howard government changed the Marriage Act to say that marriage is an institution between a man and a woman.
About 1000 people rallied in Sydney on August 11 as part of a national day of action for equal marriage rights. The rallies took place on the eighth anniversary of the former Howard government's decision to ban lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people from marrying.
Refugee rights supporters gathered in Melbourne on August 12 in a protest organised by the Refugee Action Collective (Victoria) to demand no offshore processing of refugees.
Shamikh Badra, youth leader of the Palestine People's Party, speaking at a forum in Perth. Badra is touring Australia thanks to socialist youth group Resistance. Film by Zeb Parkes for Green Left TV.
The Socialist Alliance NSW released the statement below on August 13. * * * “Building larger and larger carparks next to railway stations is not the solution to congestion,” says John Coleman, the lead Socialist Alliance candidate for the Woodville ward in the Parramatta local election. “Public transport needs to be planned and maintained to provide a complete alternative to cars — not to encourage even more cars onto the road.” Coleman is a CityRail worker, a public transport activist and a long-time resident of Granville.
Rally in Melbourne to stop Black deaths in custody in Australia. Interview with political activist Viv Moore. Filmed by Katrina Channels for Green Left TV.
Protesters gathered in Perth on August 11 as part of a national day of protest that called on the Australian government to reject the FV Margiris, one of the world's biggest fishing trawlers, from fishing in Australian waters. For more details visit http://stopthetrawler.net/ Footage by Zebedee Parkes
National round up from the August 11 equal marriage demonstrations marking the 8th anniversary of the Liberal-Labor ban on same-sex marriage. Footage includes Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Hobart, Brisbane and Adelaide rallies, and features Greens MP Adam Bandt (Melbourne rally) , prominent gay rights campaigner Rodney Croomb (Hobart rally), SYdney MUA secretary Paul McAleer (Sydney rally) plus more.
Forest campaigner Miranda Gibson is in the eighth month (as of August 2012) of her record breaking tree-sit, part of a campaign to have Tasmania's old growth forests protected from logging. Green Left TV's Daryl Davies interviewed Miranda - 60 metres up an old growth tree. Follow Miranda at her blog observertree.org
Armidale Action on Coal Seam Gas released the statement below on August 13. * * * Armidale Action on Coal Seam Gas has raised questions about the so-called energy forum being held in Armidale this week, saying the invitation-only event smacks of a coal seam gas promotional event that is ignoring other energy options and riding roughshod over the interests of local farmers.
The 50-year rule of the Ba’ath Party in Syria looks to be effectively over. In the past month armed clashes have spread to the Syrian capital, Damascus, and the largest city, Aleppo. Armed opposition forces have taken control of several border points. On August 6, Prime Minister Riad Hijab defected to the opposition. The regime of Bashar al-Assad — who inherited the presidency in 2000 from his father, Hafez al-Assad, who seized power in a 1970 military coup — no longer controls the country.
'Palestinians must unite to tackle the occupation' Shamikh Badra is the youth and students coordinator for the Palestinian People Party (PPP) in the Palestinian Gaza Strip. The PPP is a left-wing, secular party that is part of the Palestinian liberation movement. Badra is on a tour of Australia to speak about the situation in Gaza and Palestine's struggle for justice. Green Left Weekly’s Patrick Harrison spoke to Badra. * * *
West Papuan independence leader Buchtar Tabuni has been put on trial as part of Indonesia's crackdown on the independence movement. Tabuni, a leader of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB), was arrested in June for allegedly organising “anarchic” protests calling on the government to properly investigate a wave of random shootings blamed on independence activists. The protests were peaceful until attacked by police and ended with several activists dead and others injured.
People are raising their voices in Sydney over August 24-26 to raise awareness among activists of songs, old and new, that further movements for social change. There was a time when protest songs attracted positive media attention; now the media tends to complain about the lack of contemporary “protest” songs while they simultaneously ignore or rubbish them.
There have been outrageous abuses of power before and during the Olympic Games in London this year. These include a police attack on, and mass arrests during, a "critical mass" bike ride, the placing of missiles on civilian roofs despite protests by affected residents, and special “Olympic lanes” on roads whose use is limited those granted special permission by games organisers.