jiselle's blog

Tens of thousands of people protest rise of militarism in Japan

With rising tensions among the major countries of East Asia, the Japanese government has enacted new legislation that allows the Japanese military to take offensive action. This policy shift was greeted with anti-war demonstrations of tens of thousands of people. Subsequent to this change, the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, visited Australia last week where the two countries agreed to work together militarily against China.

Second Global Day of Action for NXP workers held last week

As reported last week, the 2nd of July was the second Global Day of Action in support of the dismissed 24 unionists from the global company NXP semiconductors. Their dismissal was a clear case of intimidation and union busting. Workers at NXP are part of the global supply chain for high tech products like mobile phones. Actions in solidarity were held all around the world. For a full report, click here.

Fleeing Cambodian workers facing uncertain future

In another case of migrant workers getting caught in political problems in their host country, over 200,000 Cambodian migrant workers ran away from Thailand fearing arrest and persecution following the military coup in Thailand. Many have come back to situations of poverty and facing a very hostile workplace climate. Earlier this year, the Cambodian government viciously attacked striking garment workers while at the workplace. Discrimination against workers and unionists is common, see here and here.

Israel continues massive military assault on Palestine

The Israeli state has engaged in collective punishment of the Palestinian people, since the death of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank. Israeli air strikes have caused injuries and destruction, see here and here. Palestinians have been targeted in revenge attacks, including a teenaged boy who was tortured and burned to death in Jerusalem. Protest rallies continue across Palestine, despite intense Israeli military control. Solidarity rallies are taking place around the world.

Australia continues regressive policies on refugees

The Australian government has been accused of intercepting a boat of 153 Tamil asylum seekers, and handing them over to the Sri Lankan navy without processing their claims. According to relatives, at least 11 asylum seekers on board the boat are fleeing Sri Lanka because of torture. They fear further torture, imprisonment or death if they are returned. Australia’s actions are the latest in a long series of repressive policies against asylum seekers and refugees. But Australia is not the only country turning away asylum seekers.  The United States is detaining refugees, mostly children, from Central America fleeing drug cartel and gang violence. Refugees are used by governments such as Australia and the US to ferment racism and to divide workers.  Only through co-ordinated international working class action will we be able to defeat the racism that drives anti-refugee policies.
Open the Borders!
Free the Refugees!

 

Migrant workers stranded in war-torn Iraq

Thousands of migrant workers from South Asia are stuck in Iraq, without work but unable to return home. Many of the workers want to flee the renewed sectarian fighting, but their employers withhold their passports. In at least one case, migrant construction workers went on strike in the city of Hilla to demand that their employer return their passports so they could travel back to India.

NAIDOC Week - 6 to 13 July 2014

The National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week celebrations are held across Australia each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Its origins can be traced to the emergence of Aboriginal groups in the 1920′s. It is a time to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and an occasion to remember the history of genocide and dispossession of Aboriginal peoples. For a full listing of events, celebrations and rallies, click here.

Striking Indian steel workers hold strong against police repression

Workers from 23 steel factories in the Wazirpul industrial zone near Delhi are still fighting for employers to honour the agreement reached after a 3-week strike in June. Now local police are colluding with employers to try and force workers back to work. Workers responded by rallying outside the labour department, which issued a notice against employers for not implementing the agreement. For rapid updates on the situation, check out the facebook page and blog.

Mass pro democracy rally in Hong Kong leads to many arrests

This year, the 1st of July commemorations attracted over 500,000 demonstrators. The 1 July protest is held each year in Hong Kong to mark the anniversary of the former British colony's return to mainland control in 1997. About 500 people were arrested, and most have been released on bail. The size and energy of the demonstrations are a result of the uncertainty people feel about the process of nominating candidates for chief executive in the 2017 election. Chief Executive is the top post in the Hong Kong government. The financial and commercial hub of Hong Kong is a vital economic area for China and these protests come amid increasing protests by workers both in Hong Kong and the mainland. While independent unionists get jailed regularly, their commitment continues.

Second Global Day of Action for NXP workers held last week

As reported last week, the 2nd of July was the second Global Day of Action in support of the dismissed 24 unionists from the global company NXP semiconductors. Their dismissal was a clear case of intimidation and union busting. Actions in solidarity were held all around the world. For a full report, click here. The NXPSCI workers and their supporters picketed the Labor Department's main office in Intramuros, Manila.  There was a solidarity rally in the US, and supporters from Belgium travelled to the Philippines to join the solidarity protest.

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