Marking 100 years since their murder, thousands pay respects to Luxemburg, Liebknecht in Germany

Thousands marched through Berlin on January 13 to pay their respects 100 years after the brutal murders of revolutionary socialists Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht, Morning Star Online said.

Marchers came from across Germany and many countries. They laid red flowers at the tombs of Luxemburg, Liebknecht and other revolutionaries in the Friedrichsfelde Socialist Cemetery in east Berlin.

The German communist leaders were assassinated in 1919 as the Spartacist revolt was crushed by the “Freikorps”, a far-right grouping of demobilised German soldiers, on the orders of Social Democrat Party leaders Friedrich Ebert and Gustav Noske. Many future members and leaders of the Nazi party served in the Freikorps.

Greece: Striking teachers tear gassed

Greek riot police tear gassed protesting school teachers protesting in Athens on January 14, Morning Star Online said. It came just days after the country’s public order minister accused police officers of indiscriminately attacking teachers in similar circumstances.

Thousands of teachers took to the streets to express their anger at the government’s process for hiring new staff in state schools.

The government pledged to hire 15,000 new schoolteachers over the next three years. However, Greece’s trade unions are unhappy at the selection process, claiming it is unfairly weighted against some candidates.

France: Growing numbers at new round of Yellow Vest protests

Thousands took part in the latest round of yellow vest protests in France on January 12 as President Emmanuel Macron announced a national debate in a bid to quell the growing unrest.

More than 84,000 demonstrators took to the streets across the country, a rise on the previous week according to official figures as the movement shows no sign of abating, Morning Star Online reported.

Concessions offered by Macron, including a pause in the fuel tax which triggered the protests and a rise in the minimum wage, have been rejected as protests continued for the ninth week.

Police mobilised across the capital and used tear gas and water cannons as clashes broke out near the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. There were 244 people arrested across the country.

Macron has initiated a series of debates which will take place online and in public halls across France to discuss four themes: taxes, green energy, institutional reform and citizenship.

January 26: Join the Invasion Day protests

[Please send additional protest details to editor@greenleft.org.au]

Adelaide

11am-6.30pm: 2019 Survival Day concert, MacDonald Park, Semaphore Beach
Hosted by Tandanya National Aboriginal Cultural Institute
Facebook

Armidale

11am: Macdonald Park, Waterfall Way, Armidale
Hosted by Anaiwan Language Revival Program
Facebook

Brisbane

10am: Emma Miller Place, Roma Street, Brisbane
Hosted by Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance – WAR and Brisbane Aboriginal-Sovereign Embassy
Facebook

Honduras: Year starts with new massacres

In the first 13 days of 2019, there were five major killings in Honduras in what local media are calling massacres, TeleSUR English said. All up, 18 people were killed by gunmen.

The Honduran Attorney General’s office and the national police say they are investigating the rash of murders but no suspects have been apprehended yet.

TeleSUR English said that the spate of massacres does not include the several other homicides that have taken place alongside these violent massacres in Honduras this year. In total, 14 people died violent deaths on January 1 alone.

The murder rate in Honduras has spiked dramatically since a US-backed 2009 military coup, with environmentalists, indigenous people and social movement activists frequently targeted for assassination.

Brazilian official wants landless activists treated as terrorists

Brazil’s far-right government of President Jair Bolsonaro will seek to classify “invasions” of farmland by landless workers as akin to terrorism, with harsher penalties for the activists, an Agriculture Ministry official said on January 14.

Brazil’s Landless Workers’ Movement (MST), one of Latin America’s largest social movements, seeks to take over unproductive lands in the name of social and economic justice to more equally distribute rural wealth.

Luiz Antonio Nabhan Garcia, land issues secretary at the ministry, said: “It is the challenge of this government to demonstrate to Congress that this is a thing very close to terrorism, or it could be said in some circumstances is terrorism, and to have a more severe application of the law.”

May says hard Brexit could lead to united Ireland, break up of Britain

Britain’s departure from the European Union without a deal would make a united Ireland and the break-up of Britain more likely, British Prime Minister Theresa May told MPs ahead of a January 15 vote on her government’s Withdrawal Agreement that it has negotiated with the European Union. May dramatically lost the vote by 432-202.

It is the first time May has admitted British rule in Ireland and Scotland could be jeopardised by Brexit.

Speaking at Westminster, she said: “To those who think we should reject this deal in favour of no deal, because we cannot get every assurance we want, I ask what would a no-deal Brexit do to strengthen the hand of those campaigning for Scottish independence — or indeed those demanding a border poll in Northern Ireland? Surely this is the real threat to our union.”

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