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Monthly Archives: May 2007

UNIVERSITY and college lecturers yesterday morning voted unanimously to reject government plans to instruct university staff to report students for ‘extremism’. The controversial proposals, first mooted last year, were universally condemned by delegates at the inaugural congress of the University and College Union (UCU) in Bournemouth. The motion, from the...
LEADERS and officials of Britain and Ireland’s transport unions will today expose the poverty-pay shame of a ferry company operating in UK and Irish waters, at the start of a week of action against rogue shipping employers. The Liverpool ‘offices’ of Celtic Link Ferries – in reality a shed in...
THE raid on Iraq’s Finance Ministry compound on Tuesday, by a column of up to 50 heavily armed police officers, in pick-up vehicles, which were waived through all of the check points around the compound, and then entered the compound building without facing any opposition to take away one...
‘ABSOLUTELY nothing depends on Belarus’ in the construction of the union state with Russia, said Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka in Minsk on 29 May at a meeting with a delegation of the Russian Federation’s Siberian Federal District. The president stressed that Belarus is ready for a serious union with Russia....
The Brussels Tribunal and the International Anti-Occupation Network have issued the following statement on Iraq entitled ‘The Way Out’: ‘If the US military declare that the Iraq war is a failure; if the only solution they can come up with is walling in the Iraqi population; if millions are...
industrial action is inevitable if the government insists on paying the NHS pay award in stages, UNISON warned yesterday. ‘If there is no change of heart over the staging of the award, a ballot for industrial action is inevitable,’ UNISON’s Ann Mitchell, told News Line. She was speaking in the light...
SHOCK, HORROR, the BBC has just found out that between 26 and 35 per cent of all of the migrants that are encouraged to come to Britain by the bosses, the gangmasters and the government, intend to stay here. This revelation was discussed in yesterday morning’s Today programme in tones...
In its Annual Report 2007, covering events of 2006, Amnesty International (AI) is scathing about the UK. It says: ‘The government continued to erode fundamental human rights, the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary, including by persisting with attempts to undermine the ban on torture at home...
Bernard Ribeiro, President of the Royal College of Surgeons, has announced his withdrawal from the crisis talks about the selection of junior doctors for training posts. With an estimated 17,000 junior doctors facing being without a post on August 1st, Ribeiro said the government was guilty of ‘a scandalous failure...
THE first bilateral talks between the US and Iran since 1980 took place yesterday and were described by the leader of the US delegation as ‘positive’ and ‘businesslike’. Before the meeting, the Iranian President, Ahmadinezhad, publicly rejoiced that the United States now needed Iran’s help to get out of...
THE sacking of the Ukrainian prosecutor-general, Svyatoslav Piskun by President Yushchenko has brought the Ukraine to the brink of a civil war with Prime Minister Yanukovych comparing the president to General Franco, the Spanish fascist dictator. Thursday was a very dramatic day throughout the Ukraine. The Prosecutor-General’s Office (PGO)...
Nearly 200 MPs, including former Labour ministers, have joined calls for the government to give nurses this year’s pay award in full, instead of the staged pay cut it is currently proposing. It comes as the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) prepares to ballot 300,000 nurses working in the NHS...
TEACHERS and students from across London went to Downing Street yesterday, to present a mass petition against the attack on the right to learn English. The petition called on Prime Minister Blair and the government ‘to withdraw plans to limit access to free courses in English for Speakers of Other...
AT THIS moment all eyes are turned to China. The US government, and worried US trade union leaders are currently talking to the Chinese Communist party leadership and to the CP-led state trade unions’ leaders. The first set of talks in Washington are about trade agreements and revaluing the Chinese...
OVER 500 angry parents, teachers and children have marched on Lewisham Town Hall in south London, shouting: ‘No cuts or privatisation! Join the march to defend education!’ and ‘What do we want? Special schools! When do we want them? Now!’ Slogans rang out from every part of the march from...
YESTERDAY the Court of Appeal ruled that the Blair government had carried out an Abuse of Power when it overruled the assurance given by foreign secretary Robin Cook in November 2000. This was that he would not appeal against the decision of the High Court to allow the Chagos...
US trade unions have warned that the immigration bill going through Congress falls way short of expectations. The strength of opposition has seen the US Senate on Tuesday decide to delay voting on the controversial bill. Last week, President George W Bush and a bipartisan group of senators crafted a compromise...
Chagos Islanders were yesterday jubilant after the Court of Appeal dismissed the government’s appeal against their right to return to their homeland. Following the ruling by three appeal court judges, Frankie Bontemps, a Chagos Islander living in Crawley, told News Line outside the court: ‘The judgement is very positive for...
As evidence is revealed of vulnerable detainees being imprisoned in overcrowded and flooded cells while fires burned, Liberty last Monday called on the Home Office to act. The civil rights group requested the Home Secretary, John Reid, to order a public inquiry into the serious disturbance that took place at...
The British Medical Association (BMA) yesterday called for a ‘cast iron guarantee’ that not one of 35,000 junior doctors will be without a job as a result of the current government-created crisis. In a message to the medical profession, the BMA deputy chairman, and the chairmen of all its main...
LABOUR Industry Minister Margaret Hodge has won the support of Hazel Blears (Chairman of the Labour Party and a candidate for the deputy leadership of the party) and 10 Downing Street itself, ie the Prime Minister Tony Blair, for her call to put Britons first as far as access...
Forty-five striking Operating Department Practitioners and theatre nurses were joined by other staff at lunchtime yesterday outside Barnsley Hospital. The Barnsley nurses, members of the GMB trade union, were on a 24-hour strike after talks broke down last weekend in a dispute over pay-cutting. Joan Keane, GMB Regional Officer for Health,...
THE BMA chairman, James Johnson has quit, forced out of office by the uprising of the junior doctors, who were not prepared to see their futures destroyed by the Blair-Brown government’s drive to privatise the NHS, a cause which Johnson has been defending and providing cover for as BMA...
TENANTS from the Parkside council estate in east London went to the High Court yesterday, demanding the cancellation of the estate’s transfer to a housing association, on the grounds of alleged ballot-rigging. Tenant Carole Swords, who has brought the case to court, told News Line: ‘In July 2005, we had...
THE AGENDA for UNISON’s 14th National Delegate Conference in Brighton from 19-22 June only palely reflects the exploding anger and determination of public sector workers to smash privatisation, keep out the Tories and bring down Blair and Brown. But what it does most vividly reveal is the crisis of ...
THE deputy chief constable of Hampshire Ian Readhead said yesterday that Britain could become a surveillance society with cameras on every street corner. As a matter of fact, he was commenting on something that has already happened, not a situation that is about to happen. Readhead told the BBC’s Politics...
Israeli jets fired missiles at a car in Gaza City on Saturday night, killing three people, said the Israeli army. It claimed at least two of them were Hamas fighters. Palestinian medics said four people were killed, three of them civilians. Missiles were also fired at metal workshops that the Israelis...
Trade unions are furious that six leading charities have backed plans to close dozens of factories which provide jobs for disabled people, on the eve of tomorrow’s launch of a new trade union campaign to save the factories. Remploy, which has 5,000 disabled staff at 83 plants in the...
LAST WEEK the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice visited Moscow to meet with the Russian president Vladimir Putin. She insisted that although Russia had problems with the stationing of US radar stations and missiles in the Baltic states, the situation was no where near one that could be...
THE GMB trade union say it has found out that senior members of Remploy management are visiting MPs to brief them about the closures of Remploy factories in their constituencies and the loss of jobs for disabled people before speaking with the disabled people themselves. It is expected that the...
A PACKED-OUT Employment Tribunal held yesterday at Reading heard the cases for Gate Gourmet sacked workers fighting unfair dismissal cases against their employer, who sacked 800 workers by megaphone on August 10-11 2005. It opened with the statement by Gate Gourmet London Ltd solicitors, which claimed that the decision reached...
The first cries by citizens were heard yesterday coming from the southern Lebanese town of Al-Taybah to express their indignation at the fact that the head of the unconstitutional government, Fu’ad Siniora, has been withholding the compensation money and to protest against its depriving them of their right to...
‘There will be national action on Royal Mail and I would think Counters will be involved. The whole country will come out now,’ Greenford Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) Area safety Rep. Peter Clements told News Line yesterday. He was responding to trade and industry secretary Alistair Darling’s announcement that the...
YESTERDAY an Israeli aircraft bombed a building of the Hamas-run Executive Force in Gaza, killing at least one person and injuring about 45 others. At the same time the latest truce between Hamas militia men and their rivals from Fatah appeared on the edge of collapse when one man...
MPs on the House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts in their report of Private Finance Initiative (PFI) refinancing have called for tougher regulation of NHS PFI projects. The British Medical Association said the report confirmed its concern that PFI is damaging the NHS by draining NHS funds in to...
JUNIOR doctors went to the High Court yesterday in a bid to get the online Medical Training Application Service (MTAS) ruled ‘unlawful’, warning that the NHS is facing ‘absolute chaos’ because of the new system. Despite a retreat by Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt when she announced that ...
TWO of the largest trade unions affiliated to the Labour Party, unions that pay millions into its funds, said they were ‘looking to the Labour leadership contest as an opportunity to push for real change within the party – to policy as well as personalities’. The 1.3million-strong UNISON trade union...
Leading consultants and junior doctors have warned that the medical training crisis is risking patient safety as the NHS faces upheaval on August 1st when completely new teams of junior doctors take up their posts. Doctors’ group Remedy UK is going to the High Court today to challenge MTAS (Medical...
DAIMLERCHRYSLER is selling a 80.1 per cent share in its crisis-hit American Chrysler division to the private equity group Cerberus for $7.4bn. President George Bush’s former Treasury Secretary John Snow is the Chairman of the group that manages the $23.5bn fund. Cerberus Capital Management will get Chrysler debt free, with...
The News Line-All Trades Unions Alliance Conference held in east London on Sunday May 13th unanimously voted to carry into action the following Main Resolution: BLAIR, Prescott, John Reid, Charles Clarke, David Blunkett, the main centre of the Blair government, have gone. They’re shortly to be joined by Health Secretary...
TWO HUNDRED trade unionists and youth attended the News Line-All Trades Union Alliance conference in Bethnal Green, east London, last Sunday. Opening the conference, chairman Sheila Torrance said that Blair’s resignation ‘is certainly a welcome exit, he’s hated.’ But ‘Brown’s policies are exactly the same as Blair’s’, she added. If Brown is...
Private investors are benefiting from Private Finance Initiative debts which are damaging the NHS, said the British Medical Association this morning. The BMA was responding to today’s report by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on PFI debt refinancing. Chairman of the BMA’s Consultants’ Committee, Dr Jonathan Fielden, said:...
PRESIDENT BUSH’S officials confirmed yesterday that Iran had agreed to hold talks with the US on Iraq. The Iranian communique said: ‘Following consultations between Iranian and Iraqi officials, Tehran has agreed to hold negotiations with Washington to relieve the pains and suffering of the Iraqi people, support and strengthen...
OVER 60 health workers, service users and local residents demonstrated against the closure of the Maudsley Hospital Emergency Clinic outside the renowned mental health hospital in south London on Saturday evening. They demanded the restoration of a full 24-hour clinical service for patients experiencing a mental health crisis, after it...
TWO HUNDRED trade unionists and youth attended the News Line-All Trades Union Alliance conference in Bethnal Green, east London, yesterday. Moving the main resolution, ‘After Blair, not Brown but a workers government and socialism!’, ATUA National Secretary Dave Wiltshire said: ‘Blair was driven out of office by the intransigence of...