Latin America briefs: Chile students; Colombia peace talks; Dominican Republic threat to Haitians; Guatemalan anti-gov't protests

Chilean teachers strike against education bill

Thousands of Chilean teachers took to the streets of Santiago once again on June‭ ‬17,‭ ‬TeleSUR English said that day‭‬.‭

The protest was part of the indefinite national strike to protest against an education reform bill proposed by the government of President Michelle Bachelet.‭ ‬There were marches in at least five other cities across the country.‭

Europeans take to streets to back Greece

More than 5000 people rallied in Brussels on June 21.

Ecuador: Correa's 'Citizens' Revolution' upsets elite

Violent right-wing protests erupted in Ecuador on June 8, sparked by plans for a new inheritance tax law that would target the richest 2% of the population.

In response, President Rafael Correa agreed to temporarily halt two planned laws to carry out a nationwide debate on inequality and wealth redistribution – challenging the opposition to prove his government's laws would hurt the poor.

On June 18, Correa took to social media to start the debate, asking: “How can we call a country a 'democracy' if less than 2% of families own 90 percent of big businesses?”

Audit declares Greek debt 'illegal, illegitimate and odious'

The debt imposed on Greece and its people by creditors directly infringes the human rights of Greeks and is “illegal, illegitimate and odious”, a preliminary report issued by the Audit Committee on Public Debt declared on June 17.

The finding came as talks between Greece and its creditors finished without a deal on June 18. The International Monetary Fund is threatening the near-bankrupt country with default unless it pays the US$1.7 billion it owes by the June 30 deadline.

Peru: Workers' solidarity aids anti-mine fight

Unionists, rural workers and environmentalists are coming together in Arequipa, in southern Peru, to halt the proposed Tia Maria copper mine. The mine project belongs to Southern Copper Corporation, a subsidiary of Grupo Mexico.

Mine opponents are demanding respect for workers' rights, community democracy and involvement in development decisions, and protection for the ecosystem and rural farmers.

Grassroots groups call climate protests

Grassroots climate groups are calling for large protests in cities around the world to coincide with the United Nations climate talks held in Paris in November and December, known as COP21.

In France, a broad coalition of almost 100 groups, including trade unions, have created Coalition Climat 21 to organise mass mobilisations before and during the Paris talks.

Danger as Avaaz, Greenpeace feed G7 climate illusions

The great African revolutionary Amilcar Cabral offered the famous injunction 50 years ago: “Tell no lies and claim no easy victories.” This advice hits at the temptation of back-slapping vanity.

The leading spokespeople for the 41-million strong clicktivist team from the Avaaz NGO need to remember Cabral. They over-reached ridiculously in praising the Group of 7 meeting of seven rich nations held in Bavaria on June 7 and 8.

Avaaz wrote: “Many told us it was a pipe dream, but the G7 Summit of leading world powers just committed to getting the global economy off fossil fuels forever!!!

New evidence of of planned corporate take over as WikiLeaks releases another TPP chapter

WikiLeaks released the secret draft of the healthcare annex to the transparency chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on June 10. If the TPP is adopted, the annex would adversely affect national pharmaceutical schemes, such as Australia's Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and New Zealand's Pharmaceutical Management Agency (PHARMAC).

The TPP is a free trade deal being negotiated by countries on the Pacific rim: the US, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand, Chile, Brunei, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam and Japan. These countries represent about 40% of global GDP.

The working-class women who beat the Big Australian

Author Carla Gorton at the Cairns launch of the book and associated film project. Photo:

Women of Steel: Gender, jobs & justice at BHP
Carla Gorton & Pat Brewer
Resistance Books, Sydney
$10 paperback, 73 pages

Spain:‭ '‬Popular unity‭' ‬councils sworn in amid huge enthusiasm‭

The squares in front of scores of town halls across the Spanish state were jam-packed with enthusiastic crowds on June 13. Tens of thousands had gathered to celebrate the inauguration of progressive administrations elected in a leftward swing in the May 24 local government elections for Spain’s 8144 councils.

Syndicate content