working class self organisation's blog

South African vineyard workers erupt

For the second time in the last few months vineyard workers in the Western Cape Province, South Africa have clashed with bosses, scabs, private security goons, and the Police. They are demanding that their paltry wages are doubled, and an improvement in their working conditions. Countless injuries have been reported and at least 50 people have been arrested.

Asylum seekers occupy a church in Vienna

Frustrated at the lack of help from the local or national government, being kept in terrible conditions, and frequent threats of deportation, 100 asylum seekers have occupied a church in Vienna – 27 of whom are now on hunger strike. Despite the possibility of alternative accommodation being found they are refusing to leave due to so many disappointments in the past.

POA Cry-Wolf at Morton Hall Immigration Centre

Several prison officers are reported to have been injured during a serious disturbance at the Morton Hall Immigration Removal Centre on Christmas Eve. One prisoner is said to be in a serious condition in hospital with a head injury. Between 30 and 40 Prisoners are believed to have started a peaceful protest against conditions within the facility, and refused to return to their cells when instructed to.

Russian prisoners fight-back against corrupt and brutal screws

Hundreds of prisoners at Prison Number 6 in Kopeisk, in the Urals region of Russia, have fought fierce battles with screws and security forces and launched a rooftop occupation in a protest against draconian conditions, torture, extortion, and the use of solitary confinement. Four inmates have died at the prison in recent years following beatings from staff. The protest lasted for two days before the police and army special forces managed to regain control.

Police kill striking diamond miners in Sierra Leone

Hundreds of workers are striking against non-payment of bonuses, for an end to racism, and improved conditions at Sierra Leone’s largest diamond mine in Koidu. Following a blockade of the entrances and clashes with scabs, the armed forces were deployed, who opened fire on the workers, killing two and injuring many others.

Precarious chemical workers strike in Iran

Over 300 precarious chemical workers have walked off the job at the Fajir petrochemical plant in Iran. They are protesting against a lack of job security, unpaid salaries of up to 22 months, broken promises on pay rises and permanent contracts, and health and safety issues.

Kenyan police murder four squatters during eviction

Four people have been killed and ten others seriously injured when police opened fire on squatters protesting about being evicted from the 1200 acre Twiga Estate farm in Kenya, which they have lived on since 1952.

Squatters storm Vatican Embassy in Paris

Yesterday around 70 immigrant squatters and protesters have stormed the Vatican Embassy in Paris in protest against the church and its decision to evict squatters from an empty church in Lille to “preserve the sacred space”. Many of the squatters are now on hunger strike.

My favourite libcom posts / articles of 2012

A run-down of the ten Libcom blog posts / articles that I found the most informative, interesting, or thought provoking in 2012

Indian tea workers set fire to boss

Over 1,000 tea workers in the India state of Assam have gathered outside the home of the plantation owner as part on an on-going labour dispute. Following shots being fired from the plantation owner’s house, the workers set his house and cars alight. The plantation owner, Mridul Bhattacharya, has a history of exploiting and killing workers.

Turkish state in unprovoked brutality against students

1,000 students have clashed with the police at the METU University in Ankara, Turkey. The students were protesting the visit of the Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan – who has been pushing an agenda of privatisation across higher education in Turkey for the last couple of years.

Anti-rape protesters brutalised in India

Violence against women in India has reached epidemic proportions. This year there have been 256,000 violent crimes, of which 228,000 have been against women. There is a woman raped in India every 20 minutes, and the rate is rising. Last week saw the brutal rape of a young student on a Delhi bus by 6 drunken men. Indians decided to peacefully protest and demand justice. The state had other ideas….

Supermarket sweep across Argentina

Two people have been killed, dozens injured, and at least 137 arrests have been made in several poverty stricken cities across Argentina, during an outbreak of mass lootings at supermarkets. The state has deployed the armed forces to try and maintain order.

Frack off you frackers

In light of the government’s decision last week, to ‘green light’ the practice of onshore gas drilling (fracking) here is my brief ‘non-expert’ look at the issues.

Golden Dawn viciously attack Greek MP

A left wing MP was today viciously attacked at a football match between AEK Athens and Atromitos, by a group of boneheads identifying themselves as members of the fascist ‘Golden Dawn’.

Return to standing?

One premier league and several championship clubs have given their backing to a campaign for the re-introduction of ‘standing’ facilities at football matches. Added to this, around fifty MP’s have signed an early day motion calling for a ‘trial’ of standing sections.

Pat Finucane: State sponsored murder

The findings of a review into the 1989 murder of Belfast human rights solicitor, Pat Finucane has been made public. The findings, whilst not exactly a surprise, are nevertheless shocking, and lay naked the lengths the British state will go to in order to silence people who get in its way.

Olympic gentrification in Brazil

The gentrification around the South African world cup of 2010, the 2012 London Olympics, and the slavery and human trafficking associated with preparations for the world cup in Qatar highlighted in last months ‘Freedom’, are proof if it was needed that the major global sporting events are little more than a cash cow that enable huge corporations and governments to exploit people and land.

Golden Dawn offices bombed

It would appear that Christmas has come early in Greece. Earlier today a ‘makeshift’ bomb that included dynamite exploded in the offices of the fascist ‘Golden Dawn’ in Asprogpyrgos – a suburb of Athens.

Ann Hansen's statement on her recent arrest, imprisonment and release

Ann Hansen is a former member of Direct Action, an underground anarchist group active in the 1980s, who presently lives as a writer, farmer and public speaker in the Kingston area. On August 3, 2012, Ann was arrested and had her parole suspended for ‘unauthorized associations and political activity’ in the context of growing anti-prison organizing in Kingston, Canada’s prison capital. Ann, with the advice of her lawyer, chose to not publicize her arrest until after her parole hearing. On October 30, the Parole Board canceled her parole suspension and released her on stricter conditions. This is her first public statement regarding her arrest and imprisonment.