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Monthly Archives: October 2006

Government plans to downgrade district general hospitals in favour of care in the community are being pushed forward with the announcement of plans to carry out large numbers of operations in GP surgeries. The government is launching thirty pilot schemes across the country in which teams of GPs, consultants and...
THE Republican-dominated National Labour Relations Board (NLRB) voting along party lines to slash long-time federal labour laws protecting workers’ freedom to form unions has opened the door for employers to classify millions of workers as supervisors. Under federal labour law, supervisors are prohibited from forming unions. The NLRB ruled on three cases,...
YESTERDAY’S statement by the army commander in chief, Dannatt, represented a major intervention into politics by a bourgeois officer corps that is supposed to be non-political and bound by the dictates of the elected government. The object was to force a speedy withdrawal of the army from Iraq and its...
Hezbollah Deputy Secretary-General Na’im Qasim said last Thursday: ‘We proposed the national unity government as a positive concept.’ Speaking on Hezbollah’s Al-Manar television, Qasim continued: ‘We did not speak about toppling the government or about an exceptional case. ‘What we said was that certain developments had occurred in the country that...
The Blair government was yesterday paralysed in the face of a mutiny by Britain’s Chief of the General Staff who demanded the withdrawal of UK troops from Iraq ‘soon’. After Sir Richard Dannatt demolished all Blair’s favourite lines of spin about the...
‘STOP the employers getting away with murder,’ angry bereaved relatives said on their Families Against Corporate Killers (FACK) lobby of Parliament on Tuesday. Hilda Palmer from FACK said: ‘Today is the 2nd reading of the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Bill and it is completely inadequate. ‘It doesn’t hold companies fully...
AT a time when the government is still seeking to extend the period the police have for holding a person without charging them from 28 to 90 days, it must be noted to what use the government has put its existing ‘star chamber’ court, the Special Immigration Appeals Commission...
Human rights group Liberty yesterday called on Home Secretary Reid to explain a ‘flawed’ secret intelligence scandal to Parliament. Liberty said: ‘A security-cleared judgement released by the Special Immigrations Appeals Commission (SIAC) reveals not only that secret government intelligence in a terror case was flawed, but that this was...
Migrant workers are being shortchanged by enforced ‘self-employment’ status, says the GMB trade union. The GMB yesterday called on aircraft services company Swissport to directly employ the migrant workforce supplied to them from eastern Europe by agencies that take a large cut of the migrant workers’ earnings for accommodation and...
AN estimated 655,000 more Iraqis have died as a consequence of the March 2003 military invasion of Iraq than would have been expected in a non-conflict situation, according to The Lancet. In October 2004, the medical journal published a paper which estimated that nearly 100,000 ‘excess deaths’ had happened in...
BANK of England chairman Mervyn King’s speech in Winchester on Tuesday night was governed by a central axiom for the survival of British capitalism. He stated that however great the massive rise of prices in oil and metals, all produced abroad and having to be purchased and imported, ‘inflation is...
Witnesses giving evidence to the continuing inquest into the death in Iraq of veteran ITN war reporter Terry Lloyd in March 2003 have said he was shot dead in the head by US forces, after being wounded by an Iraqi bullet. Only one member has survived, of the 4-man independent...
SENATOR Warner, the Republican chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee concluded, after his recent visit to Iraq, that the US game was almost up in that country. On his return to the US, he took the ground from beneath the feet of the US President, George Bush, by...
Greek trade union leaders have called a general strike today after armed riot police furiously attacked teachers union leaders on Monday with batons and tear gas gun sprays. The attack came as they tried to enter the Ministry for Education building in central Athens during a 3,000-strong rally of nursery,...
‘I feel as though they killed my son and the government is covering up for them. It is one big cover up,’ Linda Whelan from County Durham told News Line yesterday. Linda, whose son Craig was aged 23 when he died in an explosion in a chimney he was...
WORKERS breaking down old ships on the coast of India have been forced to go without drinking water, a press conference in London has been told. The press conference at the London offices of the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) was called to allow a delegation of shipbreakers from India...
YESTERDAY North Korea shook the imperialist powers who had assumed that the workers state would not dare to proceed to test a nuclear weapon. North Korea has called the bluff of the imperialist bullies, announcing that it had tested a nuclear bomb, saying that this was an ‘historic event that...
PALESTINIAN Prime Minister Ismail Haniya spoke at a rally organised by the Hamas Movement at Al-Yarmuk playground in Gaza on 6 October ‘in support of the Palestinian government.’ Hamas declared that the rally was attended by 500,000 people. Haniya says: ‘We address you today against the background of the unjust and...
FIFTEEN per cent of the 65,000 workers employed in scrapping ships at sites on India’s west coast are suffering from asbestosis. The shocking statistic was reported to a press conference in London yesterday, attended by a delegation of Indian workers visiting Britain to demand regulation of the shipbreaking industry. ‘We...

Rcn Demands ‘A Pause’

A PETITION signed by over 46,000 nurses and members of the public was delivered to 10 Downing Street yesterday by a delegation from the Royal College of Nursing and patient charities. The ‘Keep Nurses Working, Keep Patients Safe’ petition demanded a halt to ‘the short-term fix of service cuts and...
‘Stop deportations! Asylum rights are human rights! Equal rights for migrants!’ shouted over 500 people taking part in a March for Migrant Workers last Saturday. The march through southeast London was organised by migrant workers and refugee groups with the support of the RMT trade union, the Transport and General...
Health campaigners yesterday warned that NHS privatisation and cuts will be ‘Labour’s poll tax’. The warning came as the number of protests mushroomed around the country. Geoff Martin, head of campaigns at pressure group Health Emergency said: ‘There’s been nothing like this since the spontaneous rebellion against the poll tax in...
Royal College of Nursing leaders yesterday warned that over 20,000 nurses face the sack, ahead of handing in a petition to Downing Street today. The RCN said in a statement: ‘One year after the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) first warned about the impact of NHS deficits, the number of...
PRIME minister Blair is frequently accused of replacing the established form of bourgeois rule in Britain, through an elected parliament, a government and a cabinet of ministers, with a US-style presidency, where he is the president, the cabinet is his administration, and he is the commander in chief. In fact,...
RAMSEY Clark, a former US attorney general who is one of Saddam Hussein’s lawyers, said on Thursday that any death sentence against the former Iraqi president would increase violence in the strife-torn country. ‘It seems clear that a guilty verdict will set off catastrophic violence’ and that a death sentence...
The GMB trade union warned yesterday of a ‘high noon’ over British Airways (BA) pensions crisis and the big cuts it wants to make. Ed Blissett, National Officer for GMB members working for BA, said on leaving talks yesterday: ‘Unfortunately we have made no progress with these vital talks on...
LABOUR MP Straw has been a Blackburn MP for 27 years and has long been aware that numbers of Muslim women in Blackburn wear the veil. He did not reveal his opinion that this was a disaster for community relations, or caused him severe distress, before the last general election...
CamBridgeshire Fire Brigades Union (FBU) warned yesterday that firefighters are ready to strike following a pay row which will see their wages being slashed by up to £1,000 per year. FBU members were told by e-mail that a pay increase of £1,000-a-year given to experienced firefighters would be halved immediately...
‘WE are not going to live with a nuclear North Korea, we are not going to accept it,’ US Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill said yesterday, on behalf of arrogant US imperialism, threatening war to destroy a workers’ state which has long been on the US’...
ASSAULTS are commonplace in Immigration Removal Centres, which should not be responsible for the health care of their detainees. That is what is being said by campaigners, medical experts and ex-detainees demanding the closure of Yarl’s Wood and other centres, where thousands of immigrant workers, refugees and even children have...
The lawyer acting for ten UK residents being held at Guantánamo Bay has said the US authorities would send them home now if the UK government gave the go-ahead. Clive Stafford Smith yesterday rubbished a claim by the Lord Chancellor, Lord Falconer, that there was ‘continuing dialogue’ with the US...
‘I was a victim of the Ugandan authorities and this inquiry shows I became a victim of the UK authorities,’ said Enid Ruhango yesterday. She was commenting on a new report by Chief Inspector of Prisons Anne Owers on the Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre in Bedfordshire. Owers’ report follows an...
AFTER the initial declarations of the British and other NATO forces that they were going to Afghanistan to win ‘hearts and minds’ through engaging in reconstruction works, the truth is now well and truly out. In fact, in the last two months up to a million rounds of ammunition have...
‘BY passing the Military Commissions Act, the United States Congress has, in effect, given its stamp of approval to human rights violations committed by the USA in the “war on terror”,’ warns Amnesty International. Amnesty said on Tuesday: ‘This legislation leaves the USA squarely on the wrong side of international...
THE Palestinian masses and their organisations must unite to fight their enemy which is the Zionist state of Israel, backed up and supported by the ruling classes of the US and the UK. Any party that fights to bring down the Hamas government of Palestine, the government elected by a...
The Korean Government Employees Union (KGEU) has issued an urgent appeal ‘Solidarity needed! 119 of KGEU local offices forcefully closed down!’ A KGEU statement last weekend, said: ‘What the union members of the KGEU Gyeongnam Jinju Chapter, which had protected the union office from the attacks by the riot...
POLICE brutally attacked the large teachers’ rallies which were held in all major Greek cities on Monday, as the primary schools teachers entered the third week of their national strike. Secondary school teachers joined them in a 48-hour national strike on Monday and yesterday after an overwhelming vote last Saturday. Over...
The Howard League for Penal Reform has condemned the use of force to strip-search children in Huntercombe prison, Henley-on-Thames. In a report published earlier this year, following an inquiry by Lord Carlile, the charity revealed that all children in prison were required to submit to a full strip-search on arrival...
‘GMB are calling on the government and the minister of health to reinstate the A&E services to Epsom,’ Paul Maloney, Senior Officer of the GMB told News Line yesterday. Two thousand people, including hundreds of GMB trade union members, together with other unions, political and community groups from the Epsom...
THE Afghan war saga continues. First of all it was the tour of duty that would last for three years, with Labour Defence Minister John Reid confident that the soldiers would not have to fire a shot. Thus far the paratroopers on their own are estimated to have fired almost 500,000...
A British soldier has been killed and another injured during an attack at a UK base in Basra, southern Iraq, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) reported yesterday. The two soldiers were said to have been hit in an ‘indirect fire attack’ at the Shatt Al-Arab Hotel after mortars landed...
THE General Medical Council (GMC) was set up in 1858 to register genuine medical practitioners and make a distinction between them and pretenders. This was in order to protect the public from quacks without proper medical knowledge mistreating patients. It was also to protect the reputation of the medical...
‘We have to have a judicial review; you can see from the day he was shot, everything was wrong,’ the cousin of murdered Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes told News Line yesterday. Cousin Alex Pereira was commenting on the decision of the de Menezes family’s lawyers to press for a...
A DEPARTMENT of Health (DoH) report from the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Sir Liam Donaldson, 202 pages long was published this July called ‘Good doctors, safer patients. Proposals to strengthen the system to assure and improve the performance of doctors and to protect the safety of patients’. This document proposes...
LAST Wednesday, the trade unions with the support of the majority of the Labour Party constituency parties defeated the government on the vital issue of health privatisation at the Labour Party conference. Outside the conference on that day there was a demonstration of striking NHS Logistic workers, whose company...