Home 2010 February

Monthly Archives: February 2010

Gaza Youth Trials Picket

‘MY BROTHER is a political prisoner. He was due to go to university this year, but instead he’s been jailed for protesting outside the Israeli Embassy against their war crimes in Gaza.’ Twenty-one-year-old Mohamed Ali was talking to News Line yesterday outside Isleworth Crown Court in west London, where another...
‘ONLY a full public inquiry will answer the public’s concerns about what has been done in our name,’ said the Reprieve organisation yesterday, following the final judgement of the Court of Appeal into whether MI5 knew that British citizens and residents were being tortured on the instructions of the...
‘I WANT to see you all out on April 10,’ London doctors’ leader Kevin O’Kane said on Thursday night, calling for a massive march to stop the NHS and the Welfare State being ‘butchered’. O’Kane was chairing a public meeting of more than 300 people at the headquarters of the...
OVER quarter of a million civil and public servants will stage a 48-hour national strike on March 8-9. Up to 270,000 members of the PCS trade union will take part in the action, it was announced yesterday, following a 63.4 per cent vote in favour of a strike and an...
THE inability of the Tories to pull ahead in the opinion polls, proves that 13 years of Labour rule has not been enough to erase the memories of the union busting Thatcher government and its atrocities against the working class, ranging from the provoked miners strike, to the...
THE Greek working class has once again demonstrated its strength and determination with a powerful one day general strike last Wednesday, called by the GSEE (Greek TUC) and ADEDY (public sector trade unions federation), against the government’s reactionary Stability Plan which cuts wages and pensions, allows for mass sackings...
OVER 60 Chagossians lobbied the Mauritian Embassy in London yesterday to ask what had happened to all of the compensation paid by the British government to the Mauritian government when they were forced to leave their islands over 40 years ago. The Chagos Island Community Association had written to both...
CUTBACKS, implemented in order to comply with the government’s drive for Foundation Trusts, were to blame for the unnecessary deaths of more than 400 hospital patients in Mid-Staffordshire, said angry relatives yesterday. The relatives, who want a public inquiry, called yesterday’s official report into the deaths between 2005 and...
RELATIVES of some of the 400 plus patients who died at the Mid-Staffs NHS Trust were unanimous yesterday about the official, just published report, into the disaster. They said: ‘It’s a whitewash’, adding that it was the drive to eliminate the £10 million hospital ‘debt’, in order to become a...
‘Trade union members are threatened, victimised, sacked and blacklisted by employers who pay sums of money to the Catholic Church which coordinates anti-union activities,’ said the GMB union on Tuesday. The GMB was holding a protest at Westminster Cathedral on Tuesday, to ‘ask the Pope to end the undermining of...
THE Bank of England governor, Mervyn King got ready for a somersault in economic policy yesterday, when he told the Treasury Select Committee that the UK’s quantitative easing programme may be restarted if the UK economy takes another downturn. Quite clearly the ‘recovery’ has not begun! The last meeting of the...
THE number of those displaced by the US/NATO military surge against the Taleban resistance in Nad Ali District, Helmand Province, southern Afghanistan, has more than doubled over the past four days. ‘Over 3,700 families (some 22,000 people) displaced from the Marjah and Nad Ali areas have been registered in Helmand’s...
Almost 10p in every pound of a gas or electricity bill is now going directly into the coffers of the privatised energy companies. Gas and electric companies are now making £105 a year profit from every customer – a 40 per cent increase in annual profits over the last three...

Keep Chase Farm NHS Open

THERE were 40 pickets outside Chase Farm Hospital yesterday morning, including local residents and staff. Some had travelled from as far afield as Luton and Cheshunt to join the campaign to keep the hospital open. Pickets were determined to defend the hospital by all means necessary, and put forward the policy...
THE Palestinians of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank are surrounded by barriers, as a desperate Israel tries to turn Occupied Palestine into a series of ghettos, or bantustans. The roadblocks, walls and other barriers go hand in hand with the attacks on Palestinian men, women and children...
THE massacres of the Afghan civilian population by air and missile attacks continue, proving that imperialist armies are in the business of mass murder, and have not got the outlook, the principles, or the cause to enable them to seriously try to win the hearts and minds of any...
TODAY Reprieve will begin legal proceedings to challenge the British government’s infamous series of ‘torture policies’: official guidance for agents interviewing prisoners held abroad. Under cross-examination in court, an intelligence agent known as ‘Witness B’ referred to ‘guidance’ from his superiors governing his interviews with Binyam Mohamed and others. The judicial...
BRITAIN’S Equalities and Human Rights Commission called last Saturday for an urgent independent probe into claims that the security services were complicit in the torture of more than 20 terror suspects. The call came a day after a court heard that police were already investigating allegations that the services...
BRITISH Middle East policy in the human rights arena has long been suspect. It is time for Britain to hold Israel to account Evidence of this is plentiful: its complicity with the United States in misleading the public to go along with the war on Iraq, our support for ongoing drone...
ROYAL Mail is about to break its truce with the CWU that has lasted since before Christmas through January and February. Latest reports suggest that it is seeking a deal with union negotiators that will allow it to sell off more than 30 mail centres. Property companies are being approached to...
TODAY Unite is announcing the result of its second strike ballot in three months for 13,000 BA cabin crew, which is expected to show a big majority for strike action. This will be the second big ‘yes’ for strike action. The first ballot saw 92 per cent of those...
HAMAS has vowed revenge for the Dubai killing of Abdul Mabhuh, at a Gaza rally attended by tens of thousands of people on Thursday evening. One of the speakers at the rally was Abu-Ubaydah, spokesman of the Al-Qassam Brigades, who began his speech by saying that, ‘There are tens of...
Hundreds of angry steelworkers and their families demonstrated outside the Corus steel plant in Redcar on Teesside yesterday, as the GMB and Community unions announced strike ballots against the company. Linda Robinson, wife, daughter and mother of steelworkers carried a placard stating: ‘Steelworkers have dignity – Corus, Tata and Brown...
IN DECEMBER 2008, hundreds of thousands of workers and youth marched to the Israeli embassy, in a number of demonstrations, denouncing the Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip where thousands of men, women and children were killed and wounded, and schools, hospitals and homes were bombed, shelled and destroyed. None...
THE whole trade union movement must demand the immediate release of young protesters jailed over the Gaza demonstrations last year – and the dropping of charges against all those still facing trial – the Stop The War Coalition said yesterday. The Stop The War Coalition condemned the jailing of protesters...
DESPITE the military claims of US and NATO-led occupation troops, progress remains slow because of the stiff resistance and homemade bombs ‘everywhere’. However, the US-UK propaganda line is that they are now in control of crucial areas in Marjah in Helmand province – as part of a ...
AN Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said yesterday that the Iranian government hopes that the International Atomic Energy Agency will produce an unbiased report on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear programme and protect its right to nuclear energy. Currently, Iran is under all out attack from the US, UK and Israel....
UNISON, the biggest health service trade union, yesterday called for Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Cambridgeshire to remain in the public sector. The union condemned plans to make the hospital in Huntingdon the first-ever NHS hospital to be taken over by a private company, calling the plans a ‘dangerous experiment’. Karen Jennings, Unison...
TOTAL unemployment stood at 2.46 million for the three months to December, down 3,000 on the figure for the previous three months. However, long-term unemployment, covering those out of work for more than a year, rose by 37,000 to 663,000, the highest figure since 1997. And the number of people...
PRESIDENT Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Tuesday that Iran’s arch-foe Israel was mulling starting a war ‘next spring or summer’ but has yet to make a final decision. Without specifying whom would be targeted, Ahmadinejad said: ‘But the resistance and regional states will finish them if this fake regime does anything...
UNITE, the transport workers’ union, yesterday said it was calling a 12-hour strike at the Milford Haven oil terminal next Tuesday, after a 48-hour strike due to begin today was banned by a High Court injunction. The court ruled in favour of Milford Haven Port Authority (MHPA) against...
The Foreign Secretary was asked to consider alternative options when deciding the best strategy for the protection of the Chagos Archipelago, and the return of its people to the British Overseas Territory. A just published report of findings of an academic workshop calls into question the current approach being...
CONSUMER Prices Index (CPI) inflation has been driven up to 3.5 per cent in January by, amongst other factors, VAT returning to 17.5 per cent and higher petrol prices. This is from a rate of 2.9 per cent in December. The Retail Prices Index (RPI) inflation rate which includes...
‘WE don’t rule out industrial action,’ Michael J Leahy, General Secretary of Community, the steelworkers’ union said yesterday. This was after the Tata Corus management announced that production at the Corus plant will cease within a week, bringing to an end 150-years of steelmaking on Teesside. ‘The decision to...
Vale Inco could have some explaining to do to shareholders about the quality and quantity of nickel it is producing while its 3,000 production and maintenance workers begin the seventh month of their strike, USW union officials said last Saturday. The 3,000 United Steelworkers Local 6500 members in Sudbury and...
SPEAKING to students at a Qatar university during a tour of the Gulf region designed to whip up anti-Iran feeling, US Secretary of State Clinton, told them, ‘Iran is becoming a military dictatorship.’ This is war talk on behalf of President Obama, the recent winner of the Nobel Peace...

Defend Public Sector Jobs!

Public sector union Unison, yesterday warned that predicted huge job losses in the public sector could wipe out vital local services such as day centres, elderly care, libraries, meals on wheels and children’s services. The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) survey of more than 700 employers found that...
Over two hundred workers and youth marched and rallied against the planned closure of King George Hospital, Ilford on Saturday. News Line spoke to participants as they assembled outside the hospital in Goodmayes before marching to a rally on the steps of Redbridge Town Hall. March organiser Usdaw member Andy Walker...
THE TIME is here when workers must respond to the growing chorus from the professional servants of the bourgeoisie for savage, and even more savage cuts in workers’ jobs, wages and pensions to save capitalism from the crisis caused by the capitalist system. At the same time as the most...
Fire Brigade Union (FBU) members in London are to vote on industrial action ‘up to and including strikes’ by 24 June. The London FBU Regional Committee has called on members to unite in a campaign against proposed ‘reforms’ and the suspension of London FBU regional officer Paul Embery. The ‘reforms’ would...
Jerusalem residents and Fatah official Hatem Abdul Qader confronted a group of Israeli settlers as they attempted to claim lands on the Mount of Olives on Thursday morning. The leaders of Beit Orot, an illegal Israeli settlement on the hill north of the Old City of Jerusalem, are aggressively expansionist. According...
Legal charity Reprieve and rights group Amnesty, yesterday hit back at attacks by MI5 and the government on the Appeal Court judgement that revealed UK collusion in the torture of Binyam Mohamed. Reprieve executive director Clare Algar stressed to the Today programme that MI5 and the Foreign Office ‘knew’ that...
HOME Secretary Johnson and MI5 director general, Evans, yesterday launched a hysterical witch-hunt against the exposers of the fact that both MI5 and the Labour government knew of and covered up the torture of British resident Binyam Mohamed by the US authorities. They argued that legal actions such as...
ATHENS – Greek workers delivered a powerful first blow to the government’s counter-revolutionary Stability Plan last Wednesday with a magnificent national all public sector strike and mass demonstrations despite the rain. Hundreds of thousands of workers participated in the one-day strike called by the ADEDY (federation of public...
‘Down with the junta of the bankers! Kick out the swindlers of Brussels.’ These were the slogans being shouted by Greek workers and youth last Wednesday as they marched against the ‘socialist’ Papandreou government’s Stability Plan. The one-day general strike was against the plan to cut wages and pensions,...