Issue 1097

Australia

The Queensland government moved a motion on May 26 that the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Committee is to report back to state parliament on the Abortion Law Reform (Woman's Right to Choose) Amendment Bill 2016 by August 26.

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Pressure is mounting for the replacement of Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) chief executive Dr Larry Marshall as the crisis deepens over the proposed sackings of hundreds of research scientists from the organisation's climate change and other divisions....

Thirty students representing 25 postgraduate organisations met at the Council of Postgraduate Association (CAPA) Special Council Meeting to discuss issues faced by postgraduate students in a corporatised university setting.

CAPA is the peak, not-for-profit body that represents 320,000-...

The NTEU released this further statement on the suspension of Roz Ward on June 3.

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Maurice Blackburn has written on behalf of NTEU to La Trobe University Vice Chancellor John Dewar calling for Victorian Safe Schools Coordinator and academic Roz Ward to be reinstated...

Several NSW Police officers have been criticised in court for allegedly grabbing the breasts and neck of an anti-Reclaim Australia protester, then covering their actions up by deleting evidence, making up a false charge against her, lying under oath and attacking her in court.

Simone...

The Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union (CFMEU) has placed a "green ban" on redevelopment of the famous Bondi Pavilion, in support of community groups outraged by Waverley Council plans to effectively hand the building to private companies. Union and political leaders joined with local...

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews formally apologised on May 24 in state parliament for a past law that treated people as criminals for being gay.

"It is never too late to put things right," Andrews said. "It is never too late to say sorry and mean it.

"There was a time in our...

About 20 people gathered at Sydney Town Hall on May 28 to demand, "No to right-wing coups in Brazil, Venezuela" and "US hands off Latin America" The rally was organised by the Latin America Social Forum (LASF), with the support of other solidarity groups.

Venezuelan ambassador to...

All references to Australia were removed from the final version of a major UN report on climate change after the Australian government intervened, arguing that the information could harm tourism.

The report World Heritage and Tourism in a Changing Climate, initially had a key...

The CFMEU has labelled the $21,225 fine imposed by the Federal Court on May 30 for taking action over hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid wages as a “disgrace”.

WA CFMEU secretary Mick Buchan said this action characterises the absolute bias of the Fair Work Building Commission (...

Anti-Poverty Network SA launched a new campaign this week: Target 80K (80,000) Jobs For SA .

The campaign is about shifting the discussion on unemployment away from the relentless victim-blaming, the attacks on job-seekers, and onto governments that know full well but refuse to...

About 80 people rallied outside the Turkish consulate in Melbourne on May 25 to condemn the massacre of Kurds and support the People's Democratic Party (HDP) MPs now facing prosecution by the Recep Tayyip Erdogan government.

Called at short notice during working hours, the rally...

World

Indigenous communities representing various nationalities marched through the streets of Caracas on June 2 to show their support for the government of Nicolas Maduro and Venezuela's Bolivarian Revolution.

The groups taking part in the demonstration were responding to a call made by the...

Agustin Otxotorena, a Basque executive living in Caracas, grew tired of constant calls from friends and relatives in Spain telling him that there was no food in Venezuela. So on May 20, he began publishing photos on Facebook of supermarkets in upscale sectors of Caracas filled with goods.

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Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa spoke out on June 1 about efforts by right-wing political forces in Latin America to oust democratically-elected governments, saying that it would set a dangerous precedent for democracy in the region.

“Right-wing politicians don't just want to return...


Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro at a demonstration in support of the government's emergency economic measures emergency measures, Caracas, May 14. Photo via AVN.

Failed state. Economic and social collapse. Battlefield clinics. Humanitarian crisis. Descent into chaos. These are...


United We Can.

United We Can — the united ticket made up of Podemos, the United Left, the green party Equo and three broader alliances in Catalonia, Galicia and the Valencian Country — is campaigning in the June 26 Spanish general elections on a plan to reverse economic austerity...

A long political campaign in the south Indian state of Kerala has again been played out according to the pattern followed for the last few decades. The Communist party of India-Marxist (CPI-M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) defeated the incumbent Indian National Congress-led United Democratic...


Protest in Rojava against exclusion of Kurdish-led democratic forces from negotiations in Geneva, March 30. Photo: Hawar News Agency.

The Syrian Kurds and allied communities declared their areas the “Federation of Northern Syria and Rojava” on March 17, and announced that...


Chief minister of the Northern Provincial Council, CV Wigneswaran, addressing a commemorative event at Mullivaikkal, May 18. Photo: Tamil Guardian.

Tamils throughout the north and east of the island of Sri Lanka held ceremonies on May 18 to remember those who died in the genocidal...


Brussels, May 31.

Parts of Belgium came to a halt as transport strikes by public sectors workers intensified on May 31. Workers are protesting against the government's social and economic policies, which includes budget cuts.

By May 31, train drivers had been on strike for...

A general strike rocked France in late May in the latest escalation of protests and workplace actions against the government's attempt to scrap long-standing protections for workers.

The economy ground to a halt as dockworkers in port cities, workers in oil refineries and nuclear power...


Mohamed Abdelaziz. Photo: An Phoblacht.

Mohamed Abdelaziz, President of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), died on May 31, following a long illness.

A period of 40 days' mourning has been announced. A new president will be elected by an extraordinary general...


Jailed socialist candidate Baba Jan and supporters outside the Supreme Court at Gilgit on 22 May, before police took him back to jail.

The voice from prison of Baba Jan, social activist and president of the Awami Workers Party (AWP) Gilgit-Baltistan, appears to be so frightening...

Returning to the United States in an election year, I am struck by the silence. I have covered four presidential campaigns, starting with 1968; I was with Robert Kennedy when he was shot and I saw his assassin, preparing to kill him. It was a baptism in the American way, along with the...

Analysis

When I began full-time work in the late 1980s, the working day began and ended at the same time every day. Any change to the routine meant overtime, paid at time-and-a-half or more. Even a delay in the regular lunch break meant overtime paid until the work stopped.

Now, for many,...

Sitting safely inside the head of a pale, grey telebot, slowly gyrating in an attempt to be innocuous; it turned to face the audience, introducing itself as Edward Snowden — the Worlds Most Wanted Man.

The whistleblowing warrior was presented “live” by Think Inc. at The Plenary...

In May 1939 the St Louis, carried 935 Jews seeking asylum from Nazi Germany. Many countries refused to let them in, including the US, which used coast guard ships to stop the St Louis from docking. Eventually they were forced to return to Europe, and most of the...

“Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!” the lady from California enthusiastically chanted down the phone. Some 12,000 kilometres away on a couch in Sydney, I started to chant too. It was infectious.

Mathis, in the middle of his own phone call, grinned from across the room. So did Marcus and...

Disengagement from mainstream politics is so widespread that when the marginalised and poor start getting engaged the establishment, and its media, hits back.

This explains the corporate media's sexist-tinged blitzkrieg against Sue Bolton and Roz Ward, both Melbourne-based activists....

This banker-premier's salesman's smile has well and truly worn thin. The Mike Baird Coalition government of New South Wales is on the nose.

The mood of the thousands of people who marched on NSW Parliament House on May 29 recalled the mounting public rejection of former prime minister...

When donations to political parties from property developers in NSW were prohibited by then-NSW Labor premier Nathan Rees in November 2009 the decision was not well received by significant groupings in the state Labor and Liberal parties.

The ban followed an Independent Commission...

Below is a transcript of a message John Kaye recorded shortly before his death. It was printed in a collection of articles and speeches given out at a memorial in Sydney to celebrate his life on May 27.

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I ought to be more angry than I am...

In the plans of governments in Adelaide and Canberra, South Australia is to become the country's “nuclear waste dump state”.

Most South Australians remain sceptical. And among the state's Aboriginal population — on whose ancestral lands the dumps would be located — opposition to the...

Is there anything more wretched and dishonest than the suggestion by pro-capitalist media commentators that any attempt by working people to claw back a fraction of the wealth they create every day represents the "politics of envy"?

It is even more poisonous when coupled with an effort...

The Victorian branch of the National Tertiary Education Union released this statement on June 1. It condemned La Trobe University's decision to suspend Roz Ward for a post on her personal Facebook page that said the Australian flag is racist.

Ward has been a key activist in the Safe...

The “Say NO to Racism in Moreland” rally on May 28 was originally conceived early this year and organising for it started back in February.

We wanted to offer residents and communities an opportunity to take a public stand on the racist policies of the major parties: their Islamophobia,...

Australian capitalism is still relatively profitable by international standards. But the structural adjustments underway to compensate for the end of the mining boom are already having a dire impact on poor and middle income people.

The budget deficit is expected to rise from $88 billion...

Culture

Rafael “Rafucko” Puetter is a Rio-based artist and activist who put together an “Olympic anti-souvenir shop” to highlight the injustices that arrive with the summer games.

His exhibits had a biting wit that could make you laugh and cringe simultaneously. They also drew debate and...

I was sitting in the waiting room when you flashed across the screen
A heatwave smothered India and you were on the scene.
As you tried to cross the street, your shoe stuck to the road
So you ran on scorched bare feet, as the black tar slowly flowed.
Where there once were...

I just returned to the United States from Rio de Janeiro, where I was researching a story on the Olympics in August for The Nation.

People spoke to me about the displacement and police violence that are accompanying the games. Yet one of the hottest points of discussion emerged...

The reverberations. Not the rumbles, the reverberations. The death of Muhammad Ali will undoubtedly move people's minds to his epic boxing matches against Joe Frazier, George Foreman, or there will be retrospectives about his epic “rumbles” against racism and war.

But it's the...

Good news (for a change)

Duncan Hart, a student who works part-time at a Coles supermarket in Brisbane, has won a David and Goliath battle against his employer and the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA) in the Fair Work Commission.

He claimed the enterprise bargaining agreement between...