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Monthly Archives: August 2013

‘THE government should abandon its plan to raise the state pension age in light of the new evidence on projected life expectancies,’ TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said yesterday. She added: ‘It should instead set up an independent commission to examine health inequalities and the impact on people’s expected retirement...
GUANTANAMO detainee and Reprieve client Nabil Hadjarab, who was cleared for release in 2007, was freed last Wednesday and transferred to Algeria, along with a second man. Legal charity Reprieve hopes that this ‘positive step’ marks the beginning of further releases from the prison. 164 men remain in Guantanamo, over...
PRIME Minister Cameron said last Thursday night that he would respect the defeat of his ‘strike Syria’ government motion by 285-272 in the House of Commons, (with 51 Tory MPs voting against or abstaining). He ruled out joining the expected US-led strikes on Syria. If he had not given...
PRESIDENT Francois Hollande has said a vote by UK MPs against involvement in military strikes on Syria has not changed France’s resolve to take firm action. In an interview with Le Monde newspaper, Hollande said the UK vote made no difference to his support for action against the Syrian government. He...
PM Cameron yesterday disclosed that the government’s legal advice over an imminent attack on Syria was that it would be legal since it was to defend Syrians against chemical weapons and therefore constituted a humanitarian action. Cameron went into the House of Commons to move a motion that ‘a...
THE humiliating climb-down by David Cameron over Syria on Wednesday night exposes for all to see the weakness of British imperialism, the coalition government and the leadership of the Labour Party. Up until Wednesday evening war against the Syrian people was a ‘done deal’ as far as Cameron was concerned,...
OVER 1,500 people demonstrated outside Downing Street at short notice on Wednesday evening against imminent war on Syria. The demonstration, called by the Stop the War Coalition, ended with several holding a sit-down protest and blocking Whitehall. News Line spoke to some of the demonstrators. RMT assistant general secretary Steve Hedley said:...
THE African National Congress (ANC) has denied that its fear of losing large numbers of votes in next year’s election has made it reconsider its position of not talking to the Amcu (Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union). Amcu, after the Marikana struggle which saw 34 miners killed, has replaced...
THE decision by the ANC government to talk to the Amcu trade union, which has won away from the NUM majority membership status in many mines, is a concrete expression of the way that the enormous crisis of world and South African capitalism is impacting on the once-dominant bloc...
THE UK National Security Committee met midday yesterday to put the final touches to the UK contribution to a massive cruise missile strike that the US is about to hurl at Syria. THE UK National Security Committee met midday yesterday to put the final touches to the UK contribution to...
PRESIDENT Bashar al-Assad on Sunday stressed that Syria is a sovereign country that will fight terrorism and will freely build relationships with countries in a way that best serves the interests of the Syrian people. In an interview with the Russian newspaper, Izvestia, President Assad stressed that ‘the majority of...
THE UK ruling class, alongside its US masters, is getting ready to attack Syria in a matter of hours. It is to be struck with hundreds of Cruise missiles, which may well be the signal for the Turkish armed forces to enter the war, bearing in mind that the Turkish...
PARLIAMENT is being recalled tomorrow with prime minister Cameron demanding Labour support for his ‘clear motion’ for military action against Syria. Downing Street released a statement yesterday saying that contingency plans for military action against Syria are being drawn up and Cameron is chairing a National Security Council meeting of...
A SENIOR Iranian lawmaker has warned the West against a military attack on Syria, saying such aggression will threaten the security of the entire Middle East. The Chairman of Iran’s Majlis Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy, Ala’eddin Borujerdi, said last Friday: ‘If the West launches a war on...
THIS year the Trade Union Congress meets in Bournemouth from the 8th to 11th September under conditions where, if the Tory-led coalition government have their way, it will be the last legal TUC meeting before the next general election in 2015. If the proposed anti-lobbying bill – up before parliament...
TERRORIST snipers opened fire on the UN inspection team in Damascus yesterday, with one car shot at ‘multiple times’, forcing the convoy to turn back. The 20-member team was setting off to look into last Wednesday’s suspected chemical attacks in a Damascus suburb, but shortly after setting out from their...
LAST Friday the leadership of the Communications Workers Union (CWU) issued a press release welcoming the news that the day before the Labour Party shadow cabinet had finally agreed to oppose the plans by the Tory led coalition to privatise Royal Mail. The Labour Party front bench have been noticeably...
IN JUST 40 minutes of telephone conversation, imperialist leaders Obama and Cameron, on Saturday, decided the fate of millions of people in the Middle East, the Gulf and perhaps much further beyond when Cameron declared at the end of the conversation that he believed that the Assad regime...
THE DEPUTY Chairman of the Iranian Armed Forces’ Chief of Staff, Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri, yesterday warned that the United States faced ‘severe consequences’ if it launches military strikes on Syria. General Jazayeri said: ‘The US knows where the red line of the Syria front is laid; and crossing Syria’s...
TRADE unions yesterday slammed plans for NHS trusts to make money out of India. This came after the former disgraced Labour health secretary Patricia Hewitt told the Health Service Journal that up to 20 NHS trusts are in discussions with Indian healthcare providers about potential business agreements. BMA Council deputy chairman...
THE Syrian government has said over a long time that it would never use chemical weapons against its own people. Yesterday, the General Command of the Syrian Army and Armed Forces stressed in a statement that ‘there was no truth whatsoever in the false allegations made by tendentious media channels...
THE family of Sean Rigg marked the fifth anniversary of his tragic death by holding a peaceful candlelit vigil on Wednesday night, the 21st August from 7.00-9.00pm, outside Brixton Police Station where he tragically lost his life back in 2008 while he was in urgent need of mental health...
THE US Federal Reserve chairman, Ben Bernanke, gave the clearest indication this week that the Fed is intent on pursuing a policy of ‘tapering off’ its latest round of Quantitative Easing (QE) this year with a view to ending it in 2014. When Bernanke made similar noises last June, the...

UK a bailiffs paradise!

LOCAL councils should ‘back off’ from calling in bailiffs, after doing so an ‘excessive’ 1.8 million times in the last year, to collect debts on their behalf This was the demand of the Money Advice Trust, the debt advice charity, after it studied the results of its Freedom of Information...
IN the wake of the growing crisis in Egypt, divisions between the Arab rulers are widening as Turkey and Qatar support the Muslim Brotherhood while Saudi Arabia and Oman support the Egyptian army. Saudi Arabia said on Monday that Arab and Islamic countries will step in to help...
THE picture painted by Home Secretary May of the police doing their duty in the Snowden affair, as they saw it, without any government input, is in the starkest contrast with the reality that has emerged. This is that Tory leader Cameron personally sent a leading state official down...
MILLIONS of workers will be worse off under state pension reforms, the TUC warned yesterday. New research published by the TUC found that the vast majority of people currently entitled to the state second pension will get less when they retire as a result of the scheme being replaced by...
‘AFTER the first bombing, the situation was brought under control. After yesterday’s massacre, the situation was brought under control. ‘However, we cannot make predictions. I tell Lebanese officials, Lebanese politicians, the commanders of the Army and the security services, all Lebanese, and all religious authorities that if these bombings...
THE Tory-led coalition’s proposed new Lobbying Bill is sending shock waves throughout the leadership of the TUC, as its full import becomes known. This bill, purportedly being introduced to regulate the lobbying industry, is aimed at emasculating the trade union movement, and making any criticism of government policy illegal in...
THE NUJ has voiced its concerns at the erosion of civil liberties and attacks on press freedom, in a motion to the TUC Congress next month. It states: ‘Congress expresses grave concern at the continued erosion of civil liberties and democratic rights in Britain and declares its determination to win...
HEZBOLLAH leader Hassan Nasrallah, speaking via a giant screen on Saturday, vowed to respond to attacks on Hezbollah. HEZBOLLAH leader Hassan Nasrallah, speaking via a giant screen on Saturday, vowed to respond to attacks on Hezbollah. The speech was to mark the seventh anniversary of Hezbollah’s victory in the...
THE detention of a Guardian employee at Heathrow airport for nine hours was unwarranted and unlawful said Amnesty international yesterday. David Michael Miranda – the partner of Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist who analysed and published information on the documents concerning the USA’s unlawful surveillance programme released by Edward Snowden...
THE government’s Lobbying Bill is an ‘outrageous attack on freedom of speech worthy of an authoritarian dictatorship’, the TUC said yesterday. The TUC is seeking an urgent meeting with Cabinet Office Minister Chloe Smith to protest at the attack on freedom of speech and trade union rights contained in clauses...
THE Greek authorities must act immediately to curb the growing spate of xenophobic and racist attacks, Amnesty International says. It follows a brutal knife attack by a mob of around 20 men on two Pakistani migrants on the island of Crete in the early hours of last Tuesday morning. Hours before...
FIRST of all we had Labour ex-Health Secretary Burnham serving notice on Miliband that he had until the spring to challenge the Tory-led coalition and get the upper hand over it, or else the next general election was lost. A feature of his intervention was his admission that he and...
AS parents face back-to-school costs, new research shows that they also face a growing struggle to provide a decent standard of living for their families in 2013. Alison Garnham, Chief Executive of Child Poverty Action Group, said: ‘This research paints a stark picture of families being squeezed by rising prices...
RAIL union RMT confirmed yesterday that London Overground guards will take strike action, together with an overtime ban, for 48 hours over the coming Bank Holiday weekend. Guards voted overwhelmingly for strike action and action short of a strike in a ballot following the announcement by Transport for London (TfL)...
AS MINEWORKERS in Marikana prepared yesterday to commemorate the deaths of 34 of their colleagues at the hands of police a year ago, hopes for a public display of unity by the leaderships of rival unions were dashed. The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the African National Congress (ANC)...
THE MARIKANA massacre of mineworkers in South Africa one year ago, in which 34 miners were murdered by the police and hundreds injured, has changed South Africa for ever. The massacre was carried out with the authority of the South African government and was supported by the NUM trade...
MISSILE defence talks between Russian and NATO military officials in the past 10 days have reached another impasse, Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov said on Wednesday. ‘We have been discussing the missile defence issue for the past 10 days . . . however, no solution for this problem is yet...
THE bloodbath in Egypt last Wednesday, which saw hundreds of supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood cut down in cold blood by the Egyptian army, was the outcome of their inability to form a government able to stamp its authority on the working class. It was the powerful Egyptian working class...
RAIL union RMT warned yesterday that the chaotic rail franchising disaster has taken a further turn for the worse. The extension of the current First Great Western deal is teetering on the brink of chaos with just eight weeks left until the current contract expires with no new agreement in...
ISRAEL has approved 942 new settlement units for occupied East Jerusalem, a local official said Tuesday, on the eve of the scheduled resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians. The units are in addition to the more than 1,000 settlement homes approved by Israel on Sunday, in a move that...
WORKERS and young people will be forgiven if they believe that they are living in some parallel universe that has absolutely no connection with that inhabited by the Tory-led coalition government and its propagandists in the bourgeois media. This week the official drop in the number of people out of...
YOUTH unemployment increased by 15,000 during the three months to June, reaching 973,000. ‘The coalition is making life hell for youth and it must be brought down,’ said a statement from the Young Socialists yesterday. The number of people out of work for more than two years rose by 10,000 to...