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Monthly Archives: January 2020

450 jobs axed at BBC

FOUR hundred and fifty jobs are to be axed at the BBC, it was announced yesterday. The cuts include the closure of the Victoria Derbyshire show, with some roles retained to continue similar digital content under the BBC News brand. Newsnight will lose 12 posts, halve production of its four weekly...
THE TORY government suffered a defeat in the courts this week when the court of appeal dismissed a challenge by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) against two previous High Court decisions that thousands of severely disabled people had been unlawfully discriminated against after being moved onto Universal...
THE UNVEILING of the so called ‘Deal of the Century’ is yet another disgraceful act by the Trump Administration, today, said the US Palestinian Council (USPC) on Tuesday evening. ‘A “peace deal” is supposed to entail conflict-ending terms that are to the mutual benefit of both parties, and can only...
OVER half of London’s nurses want to leave the city as the cost of living devours their income. The majority of nursing staff blame the cost of accommodation and transport. The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) is proposing the introduction of rent controls across the private rented sector and free travel...
Nursing is undervalued both in status and pay and until both are enhanced the UK will continue to experience severe nursing shortages, according to a new study. The study, commissioned by the Royal College of Nursing and carried out by the RCN and Oxford Brookes University, argues that the ‘old-fashioned...
ON TUESDAY night, US President Donald Trump with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his side finally unveiled to the world his ‘Deal of the Century’ – a ‘deal’ that Trump has concluded only with Israel and which has been condemned by the Palestinian leadership who have pledged to...
PALESTINIAN President Mahmoud Abbas has firmly rejected President Donald Trump’s ‘deal of the century’ the details of which were announced yesterday evening. Abbas said: ‘Trump is a dog and the son of a dog. They called me from Washington and I did not pick up the phone … I said...
BELOW is the introduction to the Fire Brigades Union’s 64 page ‘Response to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 Report,’ containing scathing criticism of its ‘significant shortcomings’. ‘The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) is the democratic, professional voice of firefighters and other workers within fire and rescue services across the UK. ‘We...
THE BANKRUPTCY of British capitalism is there for all to see. Yesterday the Johnson Tory government was faced with making a serious break with Trump’s USA over the adoption of the Chinese company Huawei’s superfast 5G network. The UK already uses Huawei’s 4G network and neither the UK nor the...
THE SECOND phase of the inquiry into the Grenfell Tower Fire began yesterday with families and friends of the 72 men, women and children who died on that horrific night demanding that unless a new panellist is found to replace Benita Mehra, who was forced to resign, the inquiry...
BY TAMARA NASSAR From Electronic Intifada   ISRAEL is committing crimes against humanity by torturing Palestinian detainees, prisoners’ rights group Addameer says in a recent report. And Israel’s denial of fair trials to prisoners may also constitute war crimes, the group states. Addameer has been collecting evidence on Israel’s use of torture and...
T EMERGED yesterday that the number of debt repayment orders issued by the courts last year reached a record level of 1.15 million. These official figures showed that in 2019 county court judgements (CCJs) increased by 30,138 – more than double the number of CCJs issued in 2012 in England...
TWO coachloads of French ‘Gilet Jaunes’ (Yellow Vests) joined the Committee to Defend Julian Assange ‘Bastille Day’ protest outside Belmarsh prison in south east London in support of the jailed WikiLeaks founder on Saturday. Corinne Henry, one of the organisers of the Yellow Vests said: ‘We are here because in...
RUSSIAN President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Palestine and meeting with his Palestinian counterpart Mahmoud Abbas dominated the front page headlines in Friday’s issue of the three Palestinian Arabic dailies. The dailies reported that President Abbas received his Russian counterpart in Bethlehem, where they discussed issues of mutual concern. Abbas was reported...
THE Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) Saeb Erekat has just condemned US President Donald Trump’s so-called ‘deal of the century’, due to be unveiled tomorrow. He said that ‘Israel is an occupying power of the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders (East al-Quds, West Bank, and...
UP to 500 jobs will be axed at British Steel with the trade unions agreeing to the axing. The union leaders have warned the takeover could involve cutting around 10% of the company’s workforce and major changes in work practices. Nevertheless, they have backed the deal with Chinese company Jingye, which...
ISRAEL IS currently preventing gas from entering the Gaza Strip and is selling it to Egypt – while Palestinians inside the Gaza Strip are required to wait, in a line, wherever gas can be bought. According to recent reports, the severity of Gaza’s humanitarian crisis is currently growing in magnitude...
THE ‘YELLOW Vests’ who have been out on the streets of France every Saturday for over a year have joined forces with the mighty French unions with explosive revolutionary consequences. The unions launched an all-out strike on the 5th December last year which has paralysed France’s bus and rail network...
IRAQIS are joining a ‘million-man march’ against the US today as anger soars over a meeting between the president of Iraq Barham Salih and US President Trump. Last week, influential Iraqi Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr demanded that Iraqis stage a ‘million-man march’ in order ‘to condemn the American presence and...
PRESIDENT Mahmoud Abbas received the Governor General of Australia, David Hurley, and his accompanying delegation at the presidential headquarters in Ramallah on Wednesday, during which he briefed the delegation on the latest developments in Palestine. After welcoming his Australian guest who is visiting Palestine for the first time, President Abbas...
THIS WEEK at the World Economic Forum in Davos, US president Donald Trump reignited his trade war with Britain and Europe. On Wednesday Trump vowed to impose sky-high tariffs on European cars if the EU didn’t climb down and agree a trade deal with Washington on terms he will dictate. Trump...
THE UNITE union has described the announcement that there will be further job losses at JaguarLandRover’s (JLR’s) Halewood plant in Merseyside as a ‘fresh blow to the car industry’. Unite understands the job losses are a result of moving from a three shift system to a two plus shift system...
SOUTH AFRICA’S Communication Workers Union (CWU) secretary-general Aubrey Tshabalala has accused the top executives of the state-owned telecommunications company Telkom of getting rich by sacking workers. Last Wednesday, Telkom announced that it had written letters to the trade unions saying that it may be retrenching thousands of staff, putting the...
US PRESIDENT Donald Trump’s address to the annual get together of politicians, billionaires, bankers and other assorted ‘running dogs’ of capitalism at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort Davos was 30 minutes of boasting about how he had single-handedly ‘saved’ American capitalism and ushered in a period...
AT LEAST five demonstrators have been killed in Baghdad, Karbala and Baqubah in Iraq as security forces opened fire on the mass protest of young people who have risen up demanding a complete overhaul of the political system. Iraqi protesters vowed to continue their escalation until demands for an independent...
CHILDREN went missing yesterday as a US-bound caravan of refugees clashed with Mexican forces under instruction from President Trump to block them from entering Mexico. Mexican forces fired tear gas at hundreds of Central American refugees as they tried to cross the Mexico-Guatemala border after the Mexican government rejected their...
Unite, which has over 100,000 workers in the NHS, including thousands of paramedics, is warning that unprecedented demand is resulting in the ‘wheels being on the verge of falling off’ the ambulance service. Unite is further warning that if the UK experiences a flu epidemic or a prolonged period of...
THE DISGRACEFUL conditions imposed on ‘youth offenders’ have been revealed by another report from Peter Clarke the chief inspector of prisons in England and Wales. A boy at Feltham A Young Offenders Institution (YOI) was left to lie on a mattress on the floor of a ‘filthy’ cell for more...
EIGHT EU nations: France, Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Greece, the Netherlands and Portugual will support a European-led naval mission in the Strait of Hormuz, France's Foreign Ministry announced yesterday. The initiative to send European war ships to the Gulf seemed dead in the water last year when the UK announced...
NEARLY a fifth (18%) of workers have been told they’re not allowed to discuss their pay with co-workers, according to new TUC/GQR polling published today. The TUC is calling for a ban on pay secrecy or ‘gagging’ clauses, which prevent workers from challenging unfair pay, discrimination and excessive top-to-bottom pay...
LEBANON erupted over the weekend with renewed clashes between thousands of demonstrators and security forces on Sunday following violent clashes in Beirut on Saturday resulting in 400 people being injured. The uprising by workers and youth against the government started last October and has been developing from peaceful protests to...
HUNDREDS of people have been wounded in Beirut after security forces used tear gas and water cannon to disperse crowds of anti-government protesters trying to reach Martyrs’ Square, the hub of a month-long revolutionary movement calling to overthrow Lebanon’s political and financial system. On Saturday, demonstrators set out from various...
THE BMA doctors’ union secured a high court victory on Friday over controversial changes made by the Tory secretary of state for health and social care to the NHS Pensions scheme in England and Wales. In April 2019 the health secretary amended NHS pension rules in England and Wales, giving...
ON JUNE 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife Sophie were shot dead by a Bosnian Serb nationalist during an official visit to the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo. The killing sparked a chain of events that led to the outbreak of World War I by early...
THE BMA’s England GP committee has voted not to accept a contract agreement with NHS England and condemned the recently-published draft service specifications outlining what is expected of Primary Care Networks (PCNs) over the next four years. Members of the committee, who met in London on Thursday 16 January, were...
ARMED terrorist groups, positioned on the western outskirts of Syria’s Aleppo province, have intensified their crimes and attacks on safe and densely populated neighbourhoods in Aleppo City by shelling them with rockets and explosive shells. And as tens of civilians have been martyred many more were injured – mostly women...
THE time between a 999 call and fire engines arriving on to the scene of a fire has increased. This is despite the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) warning that in a fire seconds mean the ‘difference between life and death’. Firefighters take 2 minutes 42 seconds longer to respond to...
ISRAEL is creating ‘nature reserves’ in the occupied West Bank and this is ‘a blatant act of annexation and land theft that violates international law and basic Palestinian rights,’ said Hanan Ashrawi, member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) yesterday. ‘These so-called reserves are the practical...
THE Palestinian Foreign Ministry yesterday condemned in a statement remarks by Israeli Defence Minister Naftali Bennett in which he announced the establishment of what he referred to as ‘nature reserve’ settlements in the occupied West Bank and said that it will take this matter up with the International Criminal...
RUSSIAN president Vladimir Putin opened his annual State of the Nation address on Wednesday by highlighting that Russia has been able for the first time in history to become the world’s leader in advanced weapons. He said: ‘We are not threatening anyone and are not seeking to impose our will....
THE DIRECTOR of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) says she has not had enough reassurance about safe staffing to propose an end to strike action in Northern Ireland. Health workers in NI have been staging industrial action in protest against pay and staffing. Trade unions had a ‘positive’ meeting with...
The Ramallah-based Al-Haq human rights organisation on Tuesday called on the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to release the long-overdue database of businesses engaged in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise. On 24 March 2016, the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted resolution 31/36. The resolution demanded that OHCHR...
THIS week the Daily Telegraph has published a supplement ‘The Investors’ Handbook 2020’ subtitled: ‘Rising protectionism, negative interest rates, equity bubbles, debt mountains, trade wars, Middle East tensions and climate change – an in-depth analysis of the financial and geopolitical issues keeping investors awake at night.’ This is a list...
RUSSIAN President Vladimir Putin delivered his annual State of the Nation Address to the Federal Assembly yesterday. According to Putin, the birth rate in the 1990s in Russia was worse than that in the Second World War times. Putin said that Russia has been able for the first time in history...
TORY PM Johnson, yesterday morning stated he is willing to scrap the Iran nuclear deal in favour of a ‘Trump deal’. Then, in a move to break the Iran deal, the UK, France and Germany gave the EU official notice they will trigger the ‘dispute mechanism resolution’. Pulling the trigger on...