National News

RMT claims major victory in National Express dispute

RAIL UNION RMT last Thursday suspended industrial action on National Express East Anglia claiming a major victory in the fight for improved pay and conditions for members working across the franchise.

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Unite warns IBM of pensions backlash

THE GIANT general union Unite last week warned the IT giant IBM that it faces a backlash from thousands of employees against the company’s plans to close its final salary pension schemes to future accrual and to alter the terms of its early retirement scheme.

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A message to America about our NHS

THE PUBLIC sector union Unison last Wednesday added its voice, and its presence, to a protest organised by Bruce Kent outside the American embassy in Grosvenor Square, London against the slanders circulating in the United States about the NHS.

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BNP unwelcome in Derbyshire

From New Worker Correspondent in Ripley

AROUND 1,500 anti-fascists turned out in Codnor village in Derbyshire last weekend to protest against the neo-Nazi British National Party’s annual “Red, White and Blue” festival.

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High pay commission

ONE HUNDRED public figures, including left Labour MPs and trade union leaders have joined a pressure group’s campaign for a High Pay Commission to curb “excessive” pay.

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PCS anger at big pay rises for coastguard chiefs

THE CIVIL Service union PCS expressed anger last Friday as it emerged that senior managers in charge of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) awarded themselves pay rises of more than 15 per cent last year, whilst staff received little more than one per cent.

Analysis of this year’s MCA annual report shows a 7.6 per cent increase in the chief executive’s salary from £127,000 (pro-rata) in 2007/08 to £137,400 in 2008/09.

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Vigil for Afghanistan dead

by Ray Davies A HIGHLY successful protest vigil took place in Cardiff, the Welsh capital, on Monday night, to mark the deaths of over 200 British soldiers in Afghanistan.

There were powerful speeches from Leanne Woods AM, Stop the War speakers, songs of peace, petitions, and leaflets.

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Future of benefits under threat

A NEW GOVERNMENT Green Paper on the future of the benefits system has revealed plans to stop paying Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance - currently administered by the Department of Work and pensions - and transfer the funding to local authority social services.

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Lies behind anti-Muslim claims

THE NEO-NAZI British National Party is deliberately misreading Islamic texts in order to depict Muslims as inherently violent and backward according to a new report from a counter-extremism think tank called Quilliam, which seeks to give a voice to mainstream Muslims.

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Features and International News

Multiple attacks in Baghdad

by our Arab Affairs correspondent

IRAQI PARTISANS ended the lull in the fighting this week in multiple attacks on puppet government buildings in Baghdad that left over 155 dead and wounded over 500 more.

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Africa: Capitalist crisis sharpens class struggle

by Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire

THE FAILURE of capitalist methods of production and distribution is clearly illustrated by the way the collapse of the financial and industrial centres in Western Europe and the United States has devastated former colonial countries. Since late 2007 tens of millions of workers and farmers in several regions of the African continent have been severely affected by unemployment, rising commodities prices, food deficits and the decline in material aid from the industrialised states.

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Ireland: anti-Shell campaigners jailed

SHELL TO SEA activists Maura Harrington and Niall Harnett were sentenced to four and eight months in jail respectively at Belmullet district court last week for taking action as part of a campaign of peaceful civil disobedience against the ill-fated Corrib Gas Project in County Mayo.

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DPR Korea : towards the greater goal

by Kim Pong Chol

“Higher and faster!”

THAT’S THE watchword of the young scientists at the medical genetics institute at Pyongyang University of Medicine. It represents their will to do their share in opening the gate to a great, prosperous and powerful nation by making progress in medical science and technology.

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Afghanistan: elections in an occupied country

THOUGH it may seem odd to talk about elections in a military occupied country, people in Afghanistan will go to the polls on 20th August to vote for a President who has little or no authority outside the capital.

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Vietnam: war veteran seeks justice for Agent Orange victims

Vietnamese French woman Tran To Nga was a witness at the recent trial held by the Court of International Public Opinion on Agent Orange in Paris. The 70-year-old, whose children were affected by the defoliant, is in Vietnam to collect signatures for the victims. She talks to Van Dat about her work.

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March for Dublin dockers

by Stephanie Lord & Brendan Kerr

FOUR HUNDRED dockers, families and local people from both sides of the River Liffey marched through Dublin’s Docklands on Monday morning in support of workers striking over jobs and pay cuts at the British-owned Marine Terminals Ltd in the south port.

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General Dostum comes back to Afghanistan

by Abbas Ali in Kabul

GENERAL Abdul Rashid Dostum landed in Kabul last weekend to boost President Karzai’s chances in the presidential election. General Dostum returned home from exile Sunday night and immediately announced his support for sitting president Hamid Karzai.

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Israeli human rights abuses in Gaza

THE TOP United Nations human rights official has called for a “credible, independent and transparent” investigation of all alleged rights violations during Israel’s military attacks on Gaza eight months ago.

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