Category Archives: unions

Turkey –despite continuing oppression ‘there is hope’

This year’s Solidarity with the People of Turkey (SPOT) conference planned for 28 March in London was a victim of the pandemic lock-down, Since then attacks on democracy have been stepped up with continuing crackdowns on civil society, independent media and political opposition, especially members of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP). President Erdogan often accuses the HDP of having links to the PKK, but the party says it is being targeted because of its strong opposition to the president. Dozens of officials and elected HDP MPs were arrested during a crackdown after a failed 2016 coup bid and writing in the Morning Star on 24 June Steve Sweeney reported that 51 of the 65 municipalities won by the HDP at the  local elections in March 2019 had been taken over by government appointees and 22 of the party’s mayors imprisoned.

Meanwhile the economy continues to slip deeper into crisis worsened by the global Covid-19 pandemic. So the online conference on Sunday 21 June was of particular significance drawing together MPs, trade unionists and campaigners.

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Illness forces Assange to miss court hearing

Julian Assange was too ill to attend the latest court hearing in his extradition case at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 1 June. The hearing which is described as procedural, heard from Julian’s barrister, Edward Fitzgerald QC that his client did not appear by video link because he was unwell. The court had previously heard that Mr Assange had received medical advice that using the prison facility could raise his risk of coronavirus infection.

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Durham’s Big Meeting stands with Jeremy

Jeremy Corbyn at the Durham Miners' Gala, 2016
Jeremy Corbyn at the Durham Miners’ Gala, 2016

Far away from the Westminster bubble, and challenges to his leadership, tens of thousands people attending the 132nd Durham Miners Gala last Saturday gave Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn a rapturous reception, boosting both his confidence and his campaign to remain leader of the party against an expected challenge from Wallasey MP Angela Eagle.

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