Democracy

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ebulliently congratulated president-elect Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador’s FMLN party, who was declared winner on March 10 by just 6000 votes after a tense electoral race. The left-wing Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) resisted a string of US backed governments throughout the 1980s during El Salvador’s devastating civil war. Maduro wrote on Twitter: “Sanchez Ceren is a legendary leader for democracy and human rights in El Salvador. The results mean another triumph for left-wing Latin America, thank you for waking up history.”

The strategy and tactics of the Venezuelan opposition is a replay of events that took place leading up to the coup against Hugo Chavez on April 11, 2002. The blatant distortions and in some cases lies of the media — CNN in Spanish playing a lead role — represent an essential element in the strategy. There are two main groups that the United States-funded right-wing opposition has mobilised. From all appearances, the two act in coordination even though their style, and even social background, differs.

Green Left Weekly is liveblogging March in March rallies happening this weekend. There are 31 events being held across the country.

For full details of the rallies, visit the March in March Facebook page.

Check back to this page for photos and news about the rallies as they happen.

Photos sent by Green Left supporters are being uploaded to the gallery here.

The statement below was released by several socialist parties from the Asia-Pacific region. Please email international@socialist-alliance.org to add your organisation to sign the statement. *Updated signings on March 18* * * * Socialists in the Asia-Pacific region pledge support for Venezuela’s socialist revolution, a year after Chavez’s death.
We interviewed Ali Mustafa live from Egypt on January 24 — the Friday of the weekend marking the third anniversary of the popular uprising that captured the global imagination and put fear in the hearts of despots everywhere. Over a terrible connection and crackling phone line, Ali’s voice was difficult to make out as he described the scene: “The streets are empty, it’s almost eerie and ominous the way the streets are deserted.”
Dancing to the festive sounds of cumbia and ska music, thousands of supporters of the left-wing Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) celebrated the expected victory of their candidate, Salvador Sanchez Ceren, as the vote counts in El Salvador’s presidential run-off election poured in on the night of March 9.

The Organization of American States (OAS) approved a statement on March 7 expressing solidarity and support for the Venezuelan government in light of recent events. After two full days of heated debate at its summit, 29 states of the OAS voted in favor of a declaration lamenting the victims of protest-related violence in Venezuela, detailing the need for ongoing dialogue, and decidedly rejecting any intervention into, or sanctions against, Venezuela’s democratically elected government.

The Spanish government’s response to the move by armed Basque pro-independence organisation Basque Homeland and Freedom (ETA) to put its weapons beyond use has clearly demonstrated it favours continuing conflict over peace. On February 21, ETA released a video showing two of its members meeting with representatives of the International Verification Commission. The IVC were inspecting weapons that had been put beyond operational use.
Scotland will vote on September 18 on whether to become an independent nation or stay in the British “union” led by England that includes Wales and Northern Ireland. Independence is opposed by major political parties in Westminster and establishment forces in England and Scotland. However, support for independence is growing.
It has been 10 years since the February 29, 2004, coup d’etat that ousted the democratically-elected government of Jean-Bertrand Aristide in Haiti. Paramilitary groups ― including many former members of Haiti’s disbanded army and CIA-funded death squads ― engaged in a campaign of violence directed against supporters of the government and the Haitian National Police (HNP), for years before the coup.

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