International News

Declaration of Grande Riviere on Chagos

The Conference on Diego Garcia & Chagos held at Grande Riviere, Port Louis, Mauritius, bringing together 150 participants from 30 October to 2 November 2010, reached consensus that we will keep the following struggles firmly bound together, never bartering one against the other:

International conference demands return of Diego Garcia and Chagos

An International Conference on Diego Garcia and Chagos, organised by the socialist group Lalit, was held here October 30-November 2. The conference on the archipelago, illegally given by British imperialism to US imperialism as a nuclear weapons base, was a cogent and lively event attended by some 100 people on each of the four days, half of them Lalit members from different branches around the country. In all more than 200 people were present at Grande Riviere Nord Ouest and the Municipality of Port Louis, including delegations from unions, human rights groups, women’s organisations, academics, artists, Chagossian-born people, one of whom gave testimony, young Mauritian-born Chagossians and Mauritians loyal over the decades to the Diego Garcia struggle.

Israel introduces sweeping apartheid legislation

Israeli lawmakers are seeking to further extend state apartheid during the 2010-11 winter session of the Knesset (parliament). Key in the new legislation is a series of laws on a loyalty pledge that includes acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state.

There are differing views among Israeli leaders as to how far the loyalty pledge should go. Twenty-two out of 30 cabinet ministers approved legislation applying the pledge to new migrants and those applying for citizenship. As a requirement for immigration, the loyalty pledge was originally proposed by foreign minister Avigdor Liberman from the ultra-right Yisrael Beoteinu (Israel is our Home) Party. It was originally to apply only to non-Jews, but Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in the name of “equality” has pushed for it to apply to Jews as well.

Developing workers control in Venezuela

John Cleary was an active member of the Builders Labourers Federation in  the 1970s before becoming an electrician, delegate and member of the Electrical Trades Union. He was an ETU organiser for 12 years until 2001. Since then he has been active in solidarity with Venezuela and Colombia, including organising and participating in seven solidarity brigades to Venezuela. He presented a talk on workers’ control at the Latin America Solidarity Conference held October 8-9 in Melbourne. Direct Action’s Sam King spoke with him at the conference.

Boycott apartheid Israel: national campaign launched

More than 150 Palestine solidarity activists and supporters of human rights from around Australia gathered in Melbourne October 29-31 for Australia’s first national boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) conference in support of Palestine.

The conference represented a watershed moment in Australian Palestine solidarity work. It was organised in support of the 2005 Palestinian civil society call for the boycott of Israel. The 2005 call, issued by 171 Palestinian civil society organisations, appealed for a comprehensive boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign against apartheid Israel as a focal point of solidarity with the Palestinian people.

Only a month left to register for the May Day brigade to Venezuela!

Brigade dates: April 25 – May 4, 2011
Registration deadline: February 28, 2011

The Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network invites you to observe first-hand the inspiring Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela. The sweeping social changes being carried out by Venezuela’s “people’s power” movements are radically transforming life for the majority in that country - workers, women, indigenous people, young people and all those who have suffered the injustices of poverty, exploitation and exclusion that accompany corporate globalisation.

School puts together the pieces of world problems

A range of interesting topics was discussed in the Second Asian Global Justice School, organised by International Institute for Research and Education in Manila for three weeks in August. Representing the Political Committee of the Poor-People’s Democratic Party in Indonesia, I attended the school with 10 others from Taiwan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Japan and Pakistan.

World news briefs

Communist Party of Vietnam 11th Congress

The 11th Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV), held in Hanoi January 12-19, endorsed Marxism-Leninism as the cor­nerstone of the economic renewal started 25 years ago. A total of 1377 del­egates took part, representing 3.6 million members, as well as former members of its Central Committee and the group called Heroic Mothers, women who lost their children in the independence struggles.

Indonesian left group launches revamped English language website

The Political Committee of the Poor-People’s Democratic Party (KPRM-PRD) recently revamped its English language website, making it more possible for people outside Indonesia to follow developments on the Indonesian left. There are already almost 100 items posted on the site, including both party statements and reports and articles on different developments. These include materials on the history of the group and its emergence out of an earlier left party, the People’s Democratic Party (PRD), which was the most influential group on the Indonesian left until around 2002. The KPRM-PRD was formed in 2008 as a result of expulsions from the PRD.

Materials on this website date back to 2008, the time of the formation of the KPRM-PRD. The site is KPRM PRD English.

From the Belly of the Beast: 'Terrorism' raids target socialists, antiwar fighters

In a qualitative escalation, the Obama administration has for the first time used the “war on terror” against socialists in the United States. On September 24, the FBI conducted a series of coordinated early-morning raids at homes and offices in Minneapolis, Chicago, Michigan and North Carolina. The political police seized computers, passports, books, documents, cell phones, photos, financial records, diaries, maps and other materials. In one case, children’s artwork was confiscated. The warrants were issued under a 1996 statute signed into law by President Clinton making it a crime for US citizens to provide “material assistance” to any organisation designated by the government as “terrorist”.