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Monthly Archives: February 2019

THE just-concluded 55th Munich Security Conference saw the conflict between the US and the EU break out openly and venemously. German Chancellor Merkel and other European leaders at the three-day international security conference voiced dismay at a range of Trump decisions as being hostile to America’s NATO allies. When on Friday,...
THE 15th of February marked the 30th anniversary of the pullout of Soviet troops from the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan. The Soviet-Afghan War lasted from December 1979 to February 1989, with troops from the Soviet Army and its allied Afghan government forces fighting against the Mujahideen, supported by the...
MILLIONS of workers will see their take-home pay fall when contribution rates for those with auto-enrolment pensions are hiked in six weeks time. Since 2012, 10 million eligible workers have been automatically signed up to workplace pensions, but from April, their contribution will rise from 3% of their salary to...
VENEZUELA’S self-declared interim leader Juan Guaidó has set up a confrontation over US aid by calling for Venezuelans to cross borders and bring it into the country next Saturday. This is certain to bring clashes on the border and provide the US with a reason for military intervention. Juan Guaidó wants...
LABOUR’S Shadow Chancellor told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show yesterday that he is part of a movement in parliament to take Brexit ‘out of her (PM May’s) hands’ and prevent a ‘no deal Brexit’. First Marr asked Airbus Senior Vice President Katherine Bennett: ‘Can I start off by talking about...
Tens of thousands of ‘Yellow Vest’ demonstrators took part in anti-government protests across France on Saturday. Police used tear gas against them in streets across the country for the 14th consecutive weekend. France’s interior ministry said a total of 41,500 people took part in protests across the country on Saturday, including...
TORY PM Theresa May was defeated again by Parliament on Thursday evening. A motion put forward to support the government’s Brexit strategy fell, with 303 MPs voting against the motion, 258 for, and with 66 Tory MPs abstaining. MPs demonstrated what they think of May’s strategy, to return again...
UNIFOR National President Jerry Dias, speaking during a press conference, has asked for all Canadians and Americans to boycott all General Motors vehicles that are made in Mexico. That state of affairs is due to the recent news about the Oshawa General Motors plant closure in Toronto on January 25,...

UK deporting Zimbabweans

LAWYERS and rights campaigners say the UK government has been working with Zimbabwean authorities to deport asylum seekers who are wanted back home for activism. Asylum lawyers and charities have said that the Home Office has accelerated deportation of Zimbabwean nationals since Emmerson Mnangagwa rose to power in the African...
THE WARSAW Conference, organised by the US in the Polish capital on February 13-14, has outraged millions of Arabs who believe their leaders attended the conference merely as ‘extras’ in a pre-planned scenario for normalisation of Israeli-Arab ties and plans for a war with Iran and a sell-out of...
OVER 500 residents of north Kensington taking part in the 20th Silent Walk for Grenfell were joined by a large delegation of firefighters from the FBU Southeast region, from Oxford, and Hereford and south Wales. A minibus with 15 students from Paignton in Devon travelled for over six hours determined...
THE UK will be leaving the EU with no deal on March 29th if there are not sufficient changes to the backstop and any amendments passed to rule out no deal are trumped by the fact that it is legislated that the UK will leave, Stephen Barclay, Tory Secretary...
THE UNEMPLOYMENT rate in the Gaza Strip sharply increased in 2018 to reach 52% compared with 44% in 2017, while in the West Bank it was 18% in 2018, compared to 19% the year before, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) said in its latest results of the...
THE employees of a Your Independent Grocer (YIG) franchise – in Cornwall, Ontario – have been on strike since November 23rd, as employer and franchise owner John Baxtrom and the bargaining agent of parent company Loblaws Companies Ltd refuse to return to the table. RankandFile.ca spoke with Roland Lapins, Eastern...
PCS members at the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) began their two-day strike for the London Living Wage at 3.00pm on Wednesday. TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady joined the picket line yesterday morning and said: ‘Solidarity with outsourced PCS union members at BEIS, striking today for decent...
YESTERDAY, Airbus announced that it will scrap all production of its flagship A380 superjumbo aircraft, a giant cruise liner with two decks and capable of carrying 544 passengers. This was the aircraft with which Airbus boasted it would dominate the skies in the 21st century. Airbus employs 14,000 workers in...
THE RMT has launched a direct challenge to South Western Railway to honour the guard guarantee on their trains. It wants a ‘yes or no’ answer to the question of whether or not they are prepared to give a cast-iron guarantee that every train will run with a guard on...
THE DEEPLY unpopular Teaching Excellence Frame (Tef) work is failing students, hated by lecturers and not fit for purpose concludes a report released today by the University and College Union (UCU). University of Manchester student Ellen Lawrence-Clery said: ‘We’re against the Tef. They claim they are using this framework to...
SPEAKING to the BBC on Tuesday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro specifically expressed hope that his country ‘is not robbed of the gold that legally belongs to the central bank of Venezuela’ and that international law ‘will be respected and prevail’. Maduro suggested that ‘more or less 80 tonnes’ of Venezuela’s...
THE RMT has launched a direct challenge to South Western Railway to honour the guard guarantee on their trains. It wants a ‘yes or no’ answer to the question of whether or not they are prepared to give a cast-iron guarantee that every train will run with a guard on...
PUBLIC and Commercial Services (PCS) union members working in Universal Credit are voting on whether to take strike action over workloads and staff recruitment. The unprecedented decision to ballot staff in Universal Credit could mean industrial action takes place next month. This would be the first walkout in the beleaguered service,...
THE GMB is presenting a giant Valentine’s card to the Amazon warehouse in Rugeley in the Midlands today to highlight the ‘brutal’ working conditions. Workers have suffered convulsions, electric shocks, major traumas, get knocked unconscious and are taken away in ambulances, the GMB has reported. Recent investigations by GMB revealed ambulances...
UCU members at Coventry University are being balloted for industrial action in a row over pay. The ballot opened yesterday and closes on Tuesday 5 March. Members are being asked to back both strike action and action short of a strike, which could see them boycott a controversial new appraisal...
IN HIS State of the Union address last week, US president Donald Trump boasted that under his leadership the American economy had undergone a miraculous recovery saying: ‘In just over two years since the election, we have launched an unprecedented economic boom’, adding: ‘An economic miracle is taking place...
‘the Islamic Revolution will go on to defeat all US plots in the coming years just as it has done over the past four decades,’ Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday. Millions took to the streets across Iran to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution of 11th February...
THE reconstituted House of Commons Committees on Arms Export Controls (CAEC), made up of members of four select committees – Business, Innovation and Skills, Defence, and Foreign Affairs – has justifiably come under fire for turning a blind eye to the UK’s extensive arms deals with Saudi Arabia and...
THE FATHER of the Yellow Vest protester who had his hand blown off by a gas grenade in Paris on Saturday says he plans a lawsuit, while his comrade says it is symbolic that the injury took place outside the National Assembly. ‘He has no hand left below the wrist,’...
A fifth day of anti-government protests raged in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince and other cities on Monday, paralysing much of the country amid rising violence. Schools, shops and municipal offices were largely shuttered in the capital and many roads were closed by barricades erected by protesters. Thousands poured out of the...
VENEZUELA President Nicolás Maduro called Donald Trump’s government a ‘gang of extremists’ and blamed the US for his country’s crisis in an interview with the BBC yesterday. He said he would not allow humanitarian aid into Venezuela as it was a way for the US to justify an intervention. ‘They are...
CANADA’S postal workers union, the CUPW, has condemned the government of Canada’s decision to recognise Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela, over the elected president Nicolas Maduro. ‘It is deeply disturbing that the Canadian government has chosen to support this US-backed coup, which is in...
‘ONE area that the leader of the opposition Jeremy Corbyn and I do not agree,’ Tory PM Theresa May said in the House of Commons yesterday, ‘is on his suggestion that the UK should remain a member of the Customs Union.’ She was making a statement on her latest attempt...
A 38,000-STRONG petition was handed in to the Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) in Kennington, south London at midday yesterday, protesting at the proposed 18% hike in registration fees. The union Unite says that the proposed increase is another financial blow to hardpressed NHS staff, such as biomedical scientists,...
REFERRING to PM May’s letter sent to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Rory Stewart, the prisons minister, said yesterday: ‘Yes. I think she feels, as I do, that there isn’t actually as much dividing us from the Labour Party as some people suggest.’ He was speaking on the BBC’s Today Programme, ...
IN LAST year’s autumn budget Tory chancellor Philip Hammond claimed that ‘austerity is coming to an end’ in Britain. Hammond’s claim backed up Theresa May’s previous boast that she would end austerity – a desperate attempt to keep feeding workers the illusion that all the austerity cuts since 2010 have...
THE ISLAMIC resistance movement Hamas has praised recent calls by the Palestinian Democratic Union (PDU) – a political party active in the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) – for democratic Palestinian general elections. Hamas political bureau member Hussam Badran said in a statement on Saturday that his movement ‘fully supports holding...
THE SECRETARY general of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has praised the outstanding achievements made in Iran, stressing that the Islamic Republic is now top-ranked in many fields both in the Middle East region and the world four decades after the victory of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. ‘Iran was under...
SHARES in India’s Tata Motors collapsed by almost 30 per cent yesterday after the company reported gigantic losses at Jaguar Land Rover (JLR). On Thursday, Tata Motors Ltd stunned markets by posting its biggest-ever quarterly loss of £3.4 billion in just three months from September to December 2018. This, Tata...
LABOUR’s plan for a permanent customs union with the EU after Brexit can secure a Commons majority, shadow chancellor John McDonnell said yesterday. He called the proposals in Labour leader Corbyn’s letter to PM Theresa May a ‘very traditional British compromise’ to avoid a ‘catastrophic no-deal Brexit’. He added: ‘We...
‘LARGE-SCALE action’ is required, leading NHS trade unions are warning this week, as official NHS figures have exposed the fact that workers today face ‘an even greater risk’ of ill health. The warnings are being broadcast by both the doctors’ union, the BMA, and nurses’ union RCN, with the RCN...
WHEN Donald Tusk, the European Council President, speaking in Brussels came out with his comment that there is a ‘special place in hell’ for those who called for Brexit it was immediately shrugged off by Downing Street as being simply ‘unhelpful’ to May’s doomed attempt to negotiate with the...
‘BANK of England you’ve been told – Give Venezuela back its gold’ chanted a 60-strong picket line outside the bank yesterday lunchtime. News Line spoke to Venezuelan journalist Carolina Graterol at the picket who said: ‘This act by the Bank of England to hold 31 tons of...
EUROPEAN Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker yesterday ruled out re-opening the Withdrawal Agreement after meeting with Tory PM May, making it crystal clear that legally-binding changes to the backstop will not be agreed by the EU. However, May continued to insist that she could make the EU do the opposite. She...
THE KPTU (Korean Federation of Public Services and Transportation Workers’ Unions) has issued the following statement on the measures announced by the South Korean government and ruling party (February 5) in relation to the death of Kim Yong-gyun. Kim Yong-gyun, a 24-year-old subcontracted worker died after getting stuck in a...
ON TUESDAY, president Donald Trump delivered his much-delayed annual State of the Union speech to the US Congress, held up by the longest-ever shutdown of the US government. This humiliation was covered over with a mixture of vainglorious boasting about America’s ‘greatness’ and his pivotal role in creating a momentary...
ANGRY GMB and PCS members working for Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) were on picket lines outside Hampton Court Palace and the Tower of London yesterday fighting against a massive pensions rip-off, with HRP planning to close the existing pension scheme at the end of March. Kat Foulkes, PCS officer, said:...