AS we approach May Day this year, the struggle of workers both within Britain and internationally is clearly intensifying.
Roger Sutton is organiser of the London May Day Organising Committee. For more information visit www.londonmayday.org.
With threats to world peace growing, along with the increasing dominance of the economic system with massive multinational companies at its heart, workers are having to fight harder to maintain what has been won in the past. The need for international solidarity between workers is crucial.
The big London May Day this year is seeking to highlight some of the key fights going on by trade unions like the RMT Southern rail dispute, the Unite BA Mixed Fleet dispute, the small but crucially important PCS and Unite battle at the Equalities and Human Rights Commission and the Bectu Picture House fight.
BRAZIL came to a virtual standstill yesterday as trade unionists halted public transport and closed down much of the economy in protest at coup-installed President Michel Temer’s anti-working class policies. Demonstrators blocked roads and scuffled with police in many cities, showing their anger over the Temer government’s attacks on workplace rights and pensions.
The president, whose disapproval ratings have soared to 87 per cent, insists that “flexibility” will revive a moribund economy and claims that the pension system will go bankrupt without changes.
We reproduce the declaration issued by the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs about the latest developments in the Organization of American States (OAS):
We have once again witnessed another infamous and immoral decision by the discredited OAS, against the Bolivarian Revolution; a repetition of the shameful pages written against the Cuban Revolution in the 1960s.
The calling of a Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, to continue harassing the Venezuelan government, constitutes another action consistent with the OAS’ traditional role as an instrument of imperialist domination in the hemisphere; in order to undermine the sovereignty, independence and dignity of Our America.
Turkish warplanes yesterday (25th April) bombarded sites in the Sinjar area in Iraq, which it said belonged to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), inflicting human losses and material damage.
This aggression came after the recent referendum in Turkey, which gave Erdogan and his government a green light to continue along the path of arrogance and to seek to impose its will on other countries in the region through the use of force. Such an approach would, of course, open the door to further complexities in the region and the world, and would further complicate international cooperation and coordination against Daesh and terrorism with even greater difficulties.
We reproduce a statement issued by the French Communist Party about the results of the first round of French Presidential Elections:
The second round of the French presidential election will be a contest between the racist and xenophobic candidate of the far right, Marine Le Pen, and Emmanuel Macron, the candidate selected by the financial world to reinforce the liberal policies afflicting our country for the past 40 years.
This situation is extremely grave for our country. The far-right reached the second round and the left has been eliminated. However, for the first time in decades, millions of citizens, striving for social change, nearly succeeded in carrying their candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon to the second round. Voters who were betrayed by the policies of Hollande and Valls and who worked hard to bring Jean-Luc Mélenchon to the second round are today experiencing mixed and sometimes contradictory feelings.
»But, if you think that by hanging us, you can stamp out the labor movement – the movement from which the downtrodden millions, the millions who toil and live in want and misery – the wage slaves – expect salvation – if this is your opinion, then hang us! Here you will tread upon a spark, but there, and there, and behind you and in front of you, and everywhere, flames will blaze up. It is a subterranean fire. You cannot put it out.« August Spies, 31, on August 20th, 1886. One of the leaders hanged in Chicago, USA.
The World Federation of Trade Unions on the occasion of the International Workers’ Day on May 1st conveys its militant greetings to all the workers of the planet who struggle for the fulfillment of their contemporary needs through their trade union organizations.
May Day is a landmark in the workers’ struggles all over the world, since 1886 the demands of migrant workers in Chicago are still relevant today. Their struggle continues today in the struggle for stable work with rights, social security, free health and education, dignified life. Like then, in Chicago the migrant workers, who had gone to the USA for work, stood in the first line of the class struggle, also nowadays the millions of migrant workers can intensify the struggles against capitalist barbarity with their active and militant participation in the trade-unions.
For the 23rd April Grup Yorum planned its traditionally concert with the title »independent Turkey« in Istanbul/Yenikapi. In the past years the concerts were over and over banned and also Germany has more and more joined the AKP politics by refusing visas for the band, which has also organized peaceful concerts with up to ten thousands fans for decades in Europe.
Grup Yorum could count up to a million visitors at its concerts for an »independent Turkey« in Istanbul. Despite of preventions by the governemnt in the past years, it was still able to organize concerts with hundred thousands, or in worst case spontanous concerts with its fans in several neighborhoods and streets of Istanbul. We translated the latest statement of Grup Yorum, concerning the ban of the concert.