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Cuba's solidarity with Timor Leste and the Pacific -- the Pacific School of Medicine


Part 1 (Part 2 follows text)

By Tim Anderson

July 14, 2009 -- In 2008, the 700 Timor Leste and Kiribati students studying medicine in Cuba were joined by students from all over the South West Pacific -- Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Nauru and Tuvalu. Their college in western Cuba has been called The Pacific School of Medicine. For more information see ``Solidarity aid: the Cuba-Timor Leste health programme'', visit the ``Timorese students in Cuba'' Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/reqs.php#/group.php?gid=84093583428 or see the leaflet below.

COSATU: Working-class internationalism in the era of deepening global economic crisis

COSATU-supported protest in solidarity with the people of Swaziland.

Declaration of the Congress of South African Trade Unions International Solidarity Conference, Johannesburg, June 24-26, 2009.

COSATU -- Gathered at this historic International Solidarity Conference of COSATU are workers, activists and internationalists committed to a new and just world order, free from poverty, hunger and injustice. We have concluded two days of intensive engagements, critical reflections and dedicated work to assess and ascertain the revolutionary mood of workers and the poor masses of the world, the ebbs and flows of the global class struggle and the state of readiness by working-class forces and their organisations to wage a decisive battle for the new and just global economic system.

Honduras: (Updated July 3) Solidarity and left movements condemn coup, demand elected president be returned to power

Solidarity protest in Sydney, Australia, July 1, 2009. Photos by Peter Boyle.

Below are just some of the statements released by solidarity groups, left parties and governments, and international organisations demanding the return to power of Honduras' elected presidet Manuel Zelaya. They have been compiled by Australia's Green Left Weekly.To view the complete list, click HERE.

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Statement by the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network (AVSN)

Pro-Israel lobby alarmed by growth of boycott, divestment movement

By Art Young

June 24, 2009 -- The movement to call Israel to account for its crimes against the Palestinian people is growing, it is “invading the mainstream discourse, becoming part of the constant and unrelenting drumbeat against Israel”. It could eventually threaten the existence of the Jewish state by undermining the support it receives from its strongest backer, the US government.

That was the message of alarm delivered by the executive director of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Howard Kohr, to the AIPAC Policy Conference on May 3.[1]

Socialist Alliance: In solidarity with the people of Iran

June 26, 2009 (amended June 30) -- Socialist Alliance stands in solidarity with the millions of Iranians who are bravely demanding their rights in the streets despite huge state-sanctioned repression. These are the biggest protests in Iran since the 1979 protests in which the US-backed Shah was deposed.

Millions of people, old and young, ethnic and religious minorities, have taken to the streets, day in and day out since the disputed election on June 12. They have bravely defied the repressive regime of Mahmoud Ahmedinejad to demand the most basic of rights: the right to freely and transparently elect their representatives.

Some 27 people, including a young woman Neda Agha-Soltan whose death was captured on video, have been killed in the crackdown on protests. Several hundred have been injured, and a leading student activist is in a coma. Government officials on June 24 announced that there had been a total of 645 arrests in Tehran since June 13, 2009. Activists say that several hundred more, including journalists, editors, students, professors, party officials and unionists have also disappeared.

New Anti-Capitalist Party of France: `With the people and workers of Iran!'

Statement by the Nouveau Parti Anticapitaliste (NPA, New Anti-Capitalist Party of France), translated by Carmel McGlinchey, Luke Weyland and Annolies Truman for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

Since June 13, the day after the rigged presidential election, millions of Iranians have gone into the streets with cries of "Down with the dictatorship!". The ferocious repression has already caused tens if not hundreds of deaths. Young people, women and the residents of the poorer areas who comprise the majority of the demonstrators have now been joined by the trade union movement.

The union of bus workers declared its solidarity, in asserting: "As long as the principle of free organisation and elections is not applied, all talk of social liberation and the rights of the workers is only a joke". The workers of Iran Khodro, the first car manufacturer in the country (with 60,000 employees), engaged in a strike while adding their demands for salary increases and the right to strike to the demands raised in the streets. 

Indian communists: India must end support for genocide in Sri Lanka and the elite coup in Nepal

By Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation

May 11, 2009 -- A shameful spectacle of opportunism is being played out in Indian politics even as Sri Lanka is waging a chilling ``final solution'' to its Tamil national question. In the name of a war to eliminate the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Mahinda Rajapakse's regime in Sri Lanka is waging war on the Tamil people. Independent observers, international rights groups and even journalists have been prohibited from covering the reality of the war. Conservative estimates, trickling through, put civilian deaths at a minimum of 5000, including at least 500 children, since January. At least 100,000 civilians are estimated wounded. The Sri Lankan army is using cluster bombs and chemical warfare in blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions. Tens of thousands of innocent Tamils are caught up in the war zone, starved of food, water and medicine. Some 100,000 others, fleeing in desperation are being rounded up behind barbed wire fences in ``camps'', where by all accounts they will be kept under detention for three years. Sri Lankan journalists questioning their government's brutal policy have been silenced by assassination and arrest. International journalists reporting on the detention camps for Tamil civilians have been detained and deported.

Solidarity from Timor Leste: `Support the people and legitimate government of Nepal!'

Solidarity message for the people and legitimate government of Nepal, by Luta Hamutuk, Timor Leste

Dili, Timor Leste, May 13, 2009 -- The legitimate government of Nepal was formed as a result of a very democratic process in Nepal.This government came about from the struggle of a people, full of the spirit of self-reliance, which was fighting against all forms of feudal, imperialist and neoliberal oppression.

However, now the agents of the oppressors are beginning to engage in sabotage against this legitimate and democratic government, efforts which are especially driven by the military forces of the oppressors.

Based on these facts, Luta Hamutuk -- an organisation in Timor Leste that is also fighting for economic justice and self-reliance, that is against all forms of imperialist oppression -- would like to state our full support for the people and democratic government of Nepal and demand as follows:

Philippines socialists on Nepal: `We stand in solidarity with this mass movement fighting for the people’s interests'

May 14, 2009 -- The Partido Lakas ng Masa of the Philippines has attempted to follow the developments in Nepal over the recent period. We welcomed the ouster of the monarchy achieved by the people’s struggle and the mass movement, the unity of the main left forces, the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and the Communist Party of Nepal (United Marxist Leninist), and the elections which gave the left control of the government. We welcomed as a victory for the left and progressive movement worldwide the election of a left government led by the UCPN (M), along with the CPN (UML).

We therefore consider the forced resignation of this government as a result of the refusal of the pro-elite Nepalese military hierarchy and the president, backed by the country’s elite, to follow the directives of a democratically elected government carrying out the platform that it was elected upon, as detrimental to the people’s interest and only serving the interests of the Nepalese elite.

Malaysian socialists: `In defence of the revolution and democracy in Nepal'

Solidarity message to the revolutionary masses of Nepal

Statement by the Socialist Party of Malaysia

May 12, 2009.

1. The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) would like to express our greatest concern over the current political developments and intensifying social struggles in the newly born Republic of Nepal.

2. The political and military elites have once again revealed their true nature when the president, who is from the conservative Nepali Congress party, overrode the decision of Prime Minister Prachanda from the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) (UCPN-M) to sack Chief of Army Staff Katawal. Some opportunist sections of the coalition government, like the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist-Leninist) (CPN-UML) also turned to the right by opposing the UCPN (M) move.

3. The army high command has refused to obey instructions from the elected civilian government as well as refused to implement key parts of 2006 peace accords which included the integration of UCPN (M)-led People’s Liberation Army (PLA) into the current army forces. Sections of the high command in the current Nepalese army committed serious human rights violations during the armed conflict with PLA and continue to enjoy impunity, and even planned to stage a military coup against the elected government.

Indonesian leftists: Support democracy in Nepal, support Nepalese people's struggle against neoliberal imperialism!

From Berdikari, publication of Papernas (National Liberation Party of Unity), Indonesia

Jakarta, May 6, 2009 -- Neoliberal imperialism has put the Indonesian people under siege. But that does not mean that the Indonesian people will be absent in giving support and solidarity to the global people's struggle against neoliberal imperialism.

One of the country whose people are rising up courageously to fight neoliberal imperialism is Nepal. In that country, the oligarchy of landlords and local elites, supported by international capitalism, has been overthrown by the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (CPN-M) supported by the people. The CPN-M took power through a democratic election. But since its victory, the oligarchy has always tried to destabilise the CPN-M led government.

A few days ago, the conflict reached its peak as the military command -- which received support from the old forces (landlords and local elites) refused to abide by the CPN-M led civilian government. In response to this subversion, the civilian government decided to discharge the armed forces chief of staff, General Katawal, legally and constitutionally. General Katawal refused to step down and instead allied himself with the right-wing parties and conservative opposition.

Ronnie Kasrils -- South Africa and Palestine: Long roads to freedom

Ronnie Kasrils spoke at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow on March 20, 2009, at a talk organised by Pulsemedia.org and the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign. During the years of apartheid rule in South Africa, Ronnie Kasrils was a leader in the banned South African Communist Party and African National Congress, and its military wing Umkonto we Sizwe. Hunted by the security police, he was described as ``armed and dangerous''. Kasrils served as a government minister in post-spartheid South Africa until 2008.

Today Kasrils is an activist in the Palestine Solidarity Committee in South Africa, which recently won support from Durban dock workers to adopt a policy of boycotting Israeli ships that dock in South African ports.

`Worse than South African apartheid'

Scottish Trade Union Congress votes to support boycotts, divestment and sanctions against apartheid Israel

By the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign

April 22, 2009 -- The Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC), representing every Scottish trade union, voted overwhelmingly to commit to boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel. This is the third example of a national trade union federation [including Ireland and South Africa] committing to boycotts, divestment and sanctions and is a clear indication that, while Israel can kill Palestinians with impunity and Western support, it has lost the battle for world public opinion. It is now seen to be a state born out of ethnic cleansing and still expanding through the violent dispossession of the Palestinian people.

Salim Vally: The campaign to isolate apartheid Israel -- lessons from South Africa

By Salim Vally

[Salim Vally, a leading member of the Palestine Solidarity Committee in South Africa and a veteran anti-apartheid activist, will be a featured guest at the World at a Crossroads conference, to be held in Sydney, Australia, on April 10-12, 2009, organised by the Democratic Socialist Perspective, Resistance and Green Left Weekly. Visit http://www.worldATACrossroads.org for full agenda and to book your tickets.] 

Who said nearly 50 years ago that Israel was an apartheid state?

By Ronnie Kasrils

"...a colonial racist mentality which rationalised the genocide of the indigenous peoples of the Americas and Australasia, in Africa from Namibia to the Congo and elsewhere, most clearly has its parallels in Palestine."

March 17, 2009 -- Media Monitors Network -- At the onset of international “Israel Apartheid Week” in solidarity with the embattled Palestinian people, I want to start by quoting a South African who emphatically stated as far back as 1963 that “Israel is an apartheid state”. Those were not the words of Nelson Mandela, Archbishop Desmond Tutu or Joe Slovo, but were uttered by none other than the architect of apartheid itself, racist Prime Minister Dr. Hendrik Verwoerd.

He was irked by the criticism of apartheid policy and British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan’s “Winds of Change” speech, in contrast to the West’s unconditional support for Zionist Israel.

COSATU: Actions against Israel's barbarism and in support of Palestinian resistance an unprecedented success

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) is humbled by the inspirational messages from all over the world for our boycott, sanctions and divestment campaign against Israel.

By Bongani Masuku, COSATU international relations officer

February 12, 2009 -- The South African week of action against Israeli barbarism and in support of Palestinian heroism and resistance has been an unprecedented success. COSATU, its affiliates, particularly the South African Transport and Allied Workers’ Union (SATAWU) and the rest of Palestinian solidarity movement in South Africa are humbled by the large number of letters of support we have received from trade unions, solidarity groups, workers, activists and people of conscience from all over the world for our stance in solidarity with the people of Palestine. In particular, letters congratulated SATAWU dock workers in Durban for their determined refusal to off-load goods from Israel carried on the Johanna Russ.

Messages of support included those from the Palestinian Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) National Committee, dock workers in Liverpool, trade unions in Australia and Canada, and solidarity organisations from around the world.

South Africa: Victory for workers' solidarity as Israeli ship sneaks out of Durban still loaded

Congress of South African Trade Unions and Palestine Solidarity Committee (South Africa)

[See http://links.org.au/node/888 for more background information.]

February 6, 2009 -- The Congress of South African Trade Union (COSATU) is pleased to announce that its members, dock workers belonging to the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU), achieved a victory last night when they stood firm by their decision not to offload the Johanna Russ, a ship that was carrying Israeli goods to South Africa. This, despite threats to COSATU members from sections of the pro-Israel lobby, and despite severe provocation.

Spain: Anti-apartheid protesters disrupt Israeli basketball team's game

Barcelona, February 5, 2009 -- Protesters opposed to Israel's apartheid policies and its atrocities in Gaza chanted slogans and waved Palestinian flags during a basketball match between Maccabi Tel Aviv and Barcelona on Thursday, February 5, 2009. Despite tight police security, protesters managed to disrupt the game by running onto the court before being dragged away by aggressive cops and security guards. Tel Aviv was thrashed 85-65 by Barcelona.

Boicot del partit de bàsquet Barça -- Maccabi de Tel Aviv. Palau Blaugrana. 5 de febrer de 2009. Boicot a Israel. Solidaritat amb Palestina!!

South African dockworkers announce ban on Israeli ship; Palestinians salute decision

FREE PALESTINE! ISOLATE APARTHEID ISRAEL!

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and Palestine Solidarity Committee (PSC) launch Week of Action for Palestine supported by the Young Communist League and other progressive organisations

February 3, 2009 -- In a historic development for South Africa, South African dock workers have announced their determination not to offload a ship from Israel that is scheduled to dock in Durban on Sunday, February 8, 2009. This follows the decision by COSATU to strengthen the campaign in South Africa for boycotts, divestment and sanctions against apartheid Israel.

The pledge by the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) members in Durban reflects the commitment by South African workers to refuse to support oppression and exploitation across the globe.

`For international solidarity between workers' -- British left debates Lindsey oil refinery strike wave (updated Feb. 7)

Below are a range of views from the British and Scottish left on the strike wave that erupted at the Lindsey oil refinery and rapidly spread across the country. Statements from Socialist Resistance, Scottish Socialist Party, Socialist Workers Party, Respect MP George Galloway, the Socialist Party, the Morning Star, Lenin's Tomb blog and the Socialist Unity blog.

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For international solidarity between workers

Socialist Resistance statement

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