Israeli massacres in Palestine

The Israeli military continues its massacre of civilians in Gaza and the West Bank. Solidarity rallies were held throughout the world. Workers went on a general strike in the Occupied West Bank. Protesters in Egypt demanded the opening of the Rafah crossing to Gaza and the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador. Protesters in Jordan attempted to protest outside the Israeli embassy. The International Alliance In Support of Workers in Iran issued a statement against the Israeli attacks as did those in the rebel held areas of Aleppo in Syria. There have been many union actions and statements of support, including this strong statement from Australian unions. More rallies and solidarity actions have been announced.

Indian government implements its neo-liberal agenda

India's new BJP government, led by Narendra Modi, plans to reform labour laws, including making small businesses exempt from the factories act, extending maximum overtime hours, and reviewing the minimum wage laws. The BJP government also intends to privatise 700 billion rupees (US$11.7 billion) worth of state assets. Infrastructure development will be opened up to Public Private Partnerships. The BJP's first budget also outlines cuts to social welfare, such as food, fuel and fertilizer-price subsidies.

470 deaths in 20 years at Indian shipbreaking yard

In late June, five workers were killed and eight others injured in a gas explosion in the Alang Shipbreaking Yard in India's Gujarat state. All of them were migrant workers. 470 workers were killed at the Alang Shipbreaking Yard from 1983 to 2013, as well as another 15 deaths this year. The union on site called a meeting of safety officials and government officers to discuss how to prevent more deaths in the future. More action is needed to prevent more deaths.

South Korean workers strike and rally en mass

On 22 July a huge crowd of 30,000 construction workers filled Seoul Plaza on a day of national strike by the Korean Federation of Construction Industry Trade Unions (KFCITU) - see here and here. The slogans of the rally were: "With our union, an 8 hour work day is possible! A 5 day work week is possible! Safe Construction Sites are possible! Construction site without pay delay is possible!"  On 22 July Korean health care workers also rallied to protest the Korean government's plans to deregulate and privatise health services.

Turkish glass workers petition ILO for their right to strike

In June the Turkish government suspended strike action by 5,800 glass workers from 10 factories of Turkey's largest glass manufacturer Sisecam, arguing that the strike posed a risk to “public health and national security”. The Turkish glass workers union Kristal-Is have now lodged a formal complaint against the Turkish government in the International Labour Organisation (ILO). In the meantime the workers continue their campaign, including marching on the company headquarters in Istanbul.

Stop Union Repression & Free our Comrades - Public meeting August 6

Globally workers are prevented from organising by capitalists and governments. By keeping us unorganised, they can pay us less, make us work harder, and make more profits for themselves. We face fines, dismissals, beatings, rapes and even murder. Many labour activists end up in jail because of their organising activities.

In early July, AAWL hosted an online meeting with international union representatives. This meeting decided to have a Global Day/Week to ‘Free our comrades and stop trade union repression’ centred on the 16th of November. We are now hosting another international meeting to discuss how to build actions for this date.

For leaflet on meeting click here, for more information contact Pier at piergiorgio@aawl.org.au

Wednesday 6 August
6pm Evatt Rm
Trades Hall, Sth Carlton

 

1,000 Australian construction workers strike against delegate's dismissal

More than 1,000 construction workers went on strike at a construction site in Sydney after a union delegate was stood down for speaking out on the site's safety. The workers were ordered back to work by the Fair Work Commission, which deemed the action was unlawful, and banned the union (the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union) from industrial action on this matter for the next three months. Workers must organise to fight laws that criminalise industrial action.

Indonesian food workers brutally beaten by police

Since early March, hundreds of workers of PT Indofood CKA, a large integrated food company, have been on strike over their demand to be paid the revised minimum wage of $US39/month. The company has refused to negotiate with its workers or their union, the Federation of Indonesian Metal Workers Union (FSPMI). Earlier this month, Indofood contracted Indonesia’s elite riot police “Brimob” to violently attack the protesting workers. Over 20 workers were seriously injured by this crackdown. Indonesian workers have been very active in the last few years with massive general strikes

Iranian political prisoner Reza Shahabi is transferred to hospital

Earlier this week, Reza Shahabi, the jailed union organiser of the Bus Workers Syndicate of Tehran was transferred to a hospital due to his deteriorating health condition. Reza has been on a hunger strike for well over a month in protest at his continuing detention and harsh jail conditions. Reza is in danger of dying. There is an international campaign calling for his release

Organising is not a crime
Stop union repression
Free Reza Shahabi

Use of Lese Majeste in Thailand increasing under military rule

As reported previously, the Thai military junta is using all its tools at its disposal to stifle dissent and opposition to its rule. A new report details the people who are currently charged and/or convicted by Article 112 - the Lese Majeste law. Arbitrary arrests of human and labour activists are also continuing. In addition, the military junta is increasingly using nationalist ideology and targeting neighbouring Cambodia.

No to the military!
Free all political prisoners!
Organising is not a crime!

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