International News

GLW Issue 1063


Police evict I-11 residents. Photo: Awami Workers Party.

Thousands of residents of Sector I-11 informal settlements in Islamabad faced off against armed police and bulldozers of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to prevent them from demolishing their homes on July 27.


Vendors salvage goods from ruins of their shops following Saudi airs strike.

Civilians and hospitals are being targeted deliberately in Yemen by the Saudi-led Arab coalition airstrikes against the rebels in the country, officials from the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) medical charity said on July 30.

Just after midnight on July 27, a bomb exploded in the car of left-wing politician and refugee activist Michael Richter in the town of Freital on the outskirts of Dresden in eastern Germany.

Richter, a 39-year old town councillor for the socialist party Die Linke (The Left) was not in the car. No one was harmed by the blast, which also damaged a nearby car.

Police are yet to assign blame, but Richter is certain the attack came from right-wing groups in the area, who have threatened him repeatedly in recent months over his campaigning work for refugees.

“Billionaire hedge fund managers have called on Puerto Rico to lay off teachers and close schools so that the island can pay them back the billions it owes,” the Guardian said on July 28 on the debt crisis facing the United States' Caribbean colony.


BDS action in Adelaide's Rundle Mall.

Adelaide may be as far from Palestine as it gets, but a dedicated group of activists have just celebrated 10 years of BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) campaigns. Their weekly actions in the Rundle Mall highlight what BDS has become — a growing, grassroots, global phenomenon that presents a real threat to Israeli apartheid.

In 1870, six months before a retreating French army was defeated by Prussian troops at Sedan, the Deutsche Bank was established in Berlin.

Although Britain was still the pre-eminent world economic power, the US and Germany were starting to take the giant strides that would soon enough see them leave the former “workshop of the world” in their wake.


Muhammad Allan and Uday Isteiti. Picture: Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.

Khader Adnan, Palestinian political prisoner and former long-term hunger striker, won his release from administrative detention this year. In a video issued on July 19, he called for action to support fellow hunger strikers Muhammad Allan and Uday Isteiti.

In the aftermath of the harsh deal for brutal austerity and mass privatisation imposed on Greece in the early hours of July 13, both Berlin and Paris are floating alternative “solutions” to the euro problem.

Germany, on the one hand, wants greater fiscal integration, whereas France is calling for the creation of a eurozone government as well as a dedicated finance minister.

The mainstream press is talking up the divisions between the two nations as fundamentally different perspectives on the euro — or even differences in political “culture”.

British politics is being shaken up by the shock rise of veteran socialist Jeremy Corbyn to take the lead in the British Labour Party leadership contest, running on a platform against austerity and for pro-people measures such as renationalising privatised industries.

The ballot for Labour leader closes in September. The leader is elected by party members and by a new category called Labour “supporters”, which anyone can become by paying the three pounds online.

Sandra Bland, a 28-year-old African American woman, has joined the growing list of Black people killed by police whose case has become a national issue.

Bland was active in the Black Lives Matter movement, posting a series of videos in defence of the movement.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has decided not to sign off on the European Union's bailout deal with Greece, saying it does not specifically address tackling Greece's debt, TeleSUR English said on July 30.

In a meeting on July 29, the IMF board members said they “cannot reach staff level agreement at this stage” over whether to support Greece's bailout package, according to the Financial Times who received the confidential meeting minutes.

Turkey has “joined the war against ISIS”, according to US politicians and the corporate media after a July 23 deal between the US and the Turkish government. The deal gives US war planes and drones access to Turkey's Incirlik airbase from which to conduct air strikes in Syria and Iraq.

GLW Issue 1062

Showers off Lake Xolotlan sprinkled the huge crowds massed on July 19 for the 36th anniversary of the triumph of Nicaragua's popular revolution over the murderous tyranny of the Anastasio Somoza dictatorship in 1979. The revolution was led by the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN).

The Greek parliament passed a second bill on July 23 including measures needed for Greece to open negotiations over the eurozone's bailout package of 86 billion euros, TeleSUR English said that day.

United States: Death of Black activist to be 'treated like murder'

After a public outcry, a district attorney in Texas announced on July 20 that the death of African American activist Sandra Bland in a police cell will be investigated as thoroughly as a murder, TeleSUR English said.

Guatemala: UN says corporate positioning of river 'ecocide'

The United Nations said 23 species of fish and 21 species of birds, reptiles and mammals in Guatemala's Pasion River have been affected by contamination caused by industrial African oil palm production, TeleSUR English said.

Internationally renowned US intellectual Noam Chomsky told Mexican newspaper La Jornada on July 20 that it was because Washington was becoming increasingly isolated from “their own backyard” of Latin America, that the US decided to normalise relations with Cuba.

Chomsky said the fourth Summit of the Americas of 2012 in Colombia was a major turning point for the US. It saw itself, along with Canada, completely marginalised from all the crucial issues being debated — including Cuba.


Supporters of Die Linke (The Left) demonstrate in front of the Federal Chancellery, Berlin.

Protests took place in 14 cities in Germany on July 16 against the German government’s aggressive treatment of the Greek crisis and in solidarity with their European Mediterranean neighbours.

An event of profound importance took place in Brussels on July 12. The significance of the European summit negotiations extends well beyond the immediate — and devastating — consequences for the people of Greece.

The fallout will not just affect the stability of the Greek government and the political future of SYRIZA and Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

There has been a huge rise in asylum seekers in Bulgaria as a direct result of instability in North Africa and the Middle East.

They use Bulgaria as a land entry into the European Union. The Bulgarian tabloid press has coined the phrase “wave”, which has now entered political and popular language.

In 2009, the newly-elected government greatly changed the way the law was interpreted and enforced. Before 2010, there was not a single “illegal immigrant” convicted and jailed in the criminal prisons.

When Bolivian President Evo Morales announced in May that his government was allowing oil and gas drilling in national parks, mainstream and progressive media outlets alike were quick to condemn his supposed hypocrisy on environmental issues.

Writing for the Associated Press, Frank Bajak argued that although Morales is known internationally for his outspoken campaigning on climate change, at home he faces constant criticism from conservationists “who say he puts extraction ahead of clean water and forests”.

The world has been focused on the spectacle of the “Troika” of the International Monetary Fund, European Union and the European Central Bank crushing the Greek people, but it is far from the only example of strong nations using a “debt crisis” to extract more wealth from those that are weaker.

A case in point is the US colony of Puerto Rico. In a June 28 New York Times interview, the governor of the Caribbean archipelago nation declared its debt of US$73 billion “is not payable. There is no other option. I would love to have an easier option. This is not politics. This is math.”

If a Catalan Rip Van Winkle were to wake up today after a sleep of only six years, his disorientation with Catalonia would be as great as that of the original Rip Van Winkle after he dozed right through the American War of Independence.

“Am I hallucinating?” he might ask, struggling to find the right answer to questions like:

Three huge free trade deals are being negotiated right now, that will sacrifice workers' rights, health care and the environment across much of the world on the altar of corporate profits.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) are being negotiated in secret, with privileged access for selected corporations.

On July 20, 32 people were killed in a suicide bombing attack on a cultural centre in Suruç, a town in Turkish Kurdistan. More than 100 were injured.

Suruç is located across the border from the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobanê, which was besieged by forces of the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), between September and January.


SGDF activists in Suruç momements before the blast. The three women pictured were killed in the attacked. They are sisters.

Thousands of people protested on July‭ ‬15‭ ‬across Europe‭ – ‬and in cities around the world‭ – ‬in solidarity with Greece's struggle against austerity.

The next day,‭ ‬Marina Prentoulis,‭ ‬spokesperson for Syriza in Britain,‭ told TeleSUR that what was needed was a‭ “‬pan-European movement‭” ‬capable of confronting the power of European capital and the neoliberal agenda of European leaders.‭

GLW Issue 1061

British unions slammed the ruling Conservative Party on July 15 for introducing a bill derided as the biggest attack on worker's rights in decades, TeleSUR English said that day.

The government's new Trade Union Bill would impose a slew of new regulations on unions, including new voting thresholds for strikes.

At least 50% of members would need to cast a ballot for a strike to move forward. Now, unions only need to secure a simple majority of votes for a strike to be valid.